The USGS Utah Water Science Center and the State of Utah collaborated with WARC's Advanced Applications Team to build a data driven, interactive web application to provide groundwater conditions for Utah.
The Science Issue and Relevance: For decades, the U.S. Geological Survey Utah Water Science Center has produced a groundwater conditions report for Utah’s Department of Natural Resources. As with many paper reports, production and distribution costs are high and their impact is limited when compared to web-based content. As such, the USGS Utah Water Science Center and the State of Utah collaborated with the USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center’s Advanced Applications Team to build a data driven, interactive web application to deliver the information traditionally found in the paper-based groundwater conditions report. The new online report includes information on the methods used to select stations and perform collections along with links to past reports. The bulk of the report is organized and presented by hydrologic basin and uses interactive, data-driven charts to visualize information such as cumulative departure of precipitation, groundwater withdrawals, river/stream discharge, and well-specific water levels. Other components of the application convey information about yearly groundwater pumpage.
Methodology for Addressing the Issue:
Web Tool Development: The Utah Groundwater Conditions Application (https://warcapps.usgs.gov/gs-water/uwsc/ugcwa/) user interface (UI) includes a horizontal navigation control that helps the user reach groundwater areas (by basin), pumpage data, previous reports, methods, and contacts in the USGS Utah Water Science Center. The project landing page also has an interactive map of Utah displaying hydrologic basins as clickable polygons, which helps the user access data for individual groundwater areas. Within each groundwater area or basin, the UI includes an interactive map displaying the basin polygon with specific groundwater well sites as a clickable point overlay. The UI for each basin will also include a suite of basin level charts that include the full period of record and could include the following depending on the basin: precipitation (cumulative departure), river/stream discharge, and groundwater discharge (withdrawal). Additionally, a user can click on any groundwater well in the basin map widget to invoke a water level chart, which displays the full period of record for that well and links to that site’s USGS National Water Information System (NWIS) page.
Future Steps: This application was built to easily expand to meet groundwater reporting needs of USGS water centers outside of Utah. Based on future funding and cooperator needs, additional data, tools, and visualization products will be developed.