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Water levels and groundwater and surface-water exchanges in lakes of the northeast Twin Cities Metropolitan Area, Minnesota, 2002 through 2015

October 19, 2016

Overview

This study assessed lake-water levels and regional and local groundwater and surface-water exchanges near northeast Twin Cities Metropolitan Area lakes applying three approaches: statistical analysis, field study, and groundwater-flow modeling.  Statistical analyses of lake levels were completed to assess the effect of physical setting and climate on lake-level fluctuations of selected lakes. A field study of groundwater and surface-water interactions in selected lakes was completed to (1) estimate potential percentages of surface-water contributions to well water across the northeast Twin Cities Metropolitan Area, (2) estimate general ages for waters extracted from the wells, and (3) assess groundwater inflow to lakes and lake-water outflow to aquifers downgradient from White Bear Lake.  Groundwater flow was simulated using a steady-state, groundwater-flow model to assess regional groundwater and surface-water exchanges and the effects of groundwater withdrawals, climate, and other factors on water levels of northeast Twin Cities Metropolitan Area lakes.