Water Resource Studies

Below is a history of projects sponsored by the CPYRWMA addressing water resources in southeastern Alabama.

  • 1994 - 1996 “Hydrologic Characterization of the Water Resources of the Choctawhatchee-Pea Rivers Watershed”.
    Multi-year study conducted by the Geological Survey of Alabama (GSA), co-sponsored by the Authority, for the development of a predictive model to facilitate long-term planning for floods, droughts, and water-supply needs. The models incorporated interrelationships among groundwater storage, surface water storage, precipitation, stream flow, overland runoff, recharge, evaporation, aquifer characteristics and properties, ground and surface water use, and future water-use demands.
  • 1997 - 2001 “Implementation Assessment for Water Resource Availability, Protection, and Utilization for the Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow Rivers Watersheds”.
    Multi-year study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, for the establishment of watershed-wide data set of pertinent geologic information for groundwater exploration and development of water supplies from five streams. The groundwater portion of the study was one of the most comprehensive and detailed geologic investigations ever conducted in the history of the State of Alabama. The study evaluated 203,000 feet of subsurface geology from 317 water wells and deep oil and gas wells which constituted the data from which the 638 miles of cross section was developed. The study mapped the geological history for the ten-county area for the last 100 million years.
  • 2001 - 2002 “Surface Water Assessment for the Yellow River Watershed”.
    A study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, to establish a comprehensive data base of water quality, water quantity, and biological data that may be utilized to evaluate the hydrologic and geochemical characteristics of the Yellow River watershed and the viability of Five Runs Creek and the Yellow River as potential public-water supply sources. The data will be necessary to Alabama officials who are considering possible cooperative water source development projects with northwest Florida.
  • 2002 “An Isotopic and Geochemical Assessment of Water from the Aquifers of Cretaceous Age”.
    A study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, to determine the possibility for good quality groundwater from the deep Tuscaloosa Group aquifers to exist along strike and downgradient from deep (more than 1,500 feet) water production in Pike, Dale, Coffee, and Henry counties. The study also determined the age and recharge history of sampled waters in the aquifers by isotopic analyses.
  • A study conducted by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, co-sponsored by the Authority, to assess historical and existing water demand for the ten southeastern counties and make long-range forecasts of population growth and water demand for the next 50 years. Municipal and industrial water demand forecasts were developed for the ten southeastern counties.
  • 2001 – 2002 “Wetlands Assessment for Proposed Water Supply Reservoirs”.
    A study conducted by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, co-sponsored by the Authority, to determine the approximate area of wetlands, by type, that would be affected by the five potential water supply impoundment areas and to determine the range of probably mitigation requirements for each.
  • 2001 - 2002 “Agricultural Water Demand”.
    A study conducted by Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), co-sponsored by the Authority, to determine historical agricultural water use and to project water demand for all agricultural activities within the ten-county watershed management area for the next 50 years.
  • 2003 - 2004 “Surface Water Assessment for Lightwood Knot Creek and Lake Frank Jackson, Northern Covington County”.
    A multi-year study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, to evaluate Lake Frank Jackson at Opp and its primary tributary, Lightwood Knot Creek, to determine the initial viability of this water source as a potential future public water supply.
  • 2002 - 2004 “Water Supply Alternatives Study for Southeast Alabama”.
    Multi-year study conducted by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, co-sponsored by the Authority, to determine future water demands for the regions, assess the capacity of existing sources to satisfy future demands, and to evaluate alternative sources for future water supply.
  • 2004 “Water Quality Assessment for Little Choctawhatchee River and Blackwood Creek”.
    A study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, to verify the presence of lead and mercury in the water and sediments from Little Choctawhatchee River and to perform an initial evaluation of toxic contaminates in water and sediments downstream from the Super Fund site in Dunham and Blackwood Creeks.
  • 2004 - 2005 “Determination of Stress on Southeast Alabama Aquifers and Estimation of Adequacy of Groundwater Sources”.
    A multi-year study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, the City of Dothan, Alabama and the City of Enterprise, Alabama to perform a recharge estimate and determination of stress placed on aquifers by water production in southeast Alabama.
  • 2004 – 2005 “Lake Jackson Hydrogeologic Assessment”.
    A study conducted by the GSA, co-sponsored by the Authority, the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries, the Covington County Commission, and the Florala Water and Sewer Board, to conduct a hydrogeologic assessment of the Lake Jackson area of southern Covington County, Alabama. The study will include collection of geologic, hydrologic, groundwater recharge, and lake structure data to determine if Lake Jackson at Florala, an ancient Pleistocene sinkhole, might be developed as a significant source of potable water for southern Alabama and possibly northwest Florida.
  • 2004 – 2007 “Assessment of Aquifer Recharge, Groundwater Production Impacts, and Future Groundwater Development in Southeast Alabama”.
    In keeping with the systematic approach of water date collection and interpretation, the Geological Survey of Alabama performed a recharge estimate and determination of stress placed on aquifers by water production in southeast Alabama for the CPYRWMA. Data collected from the research determined the current potentiometric surface for each aquifer; the quantity of groundwater available for each aquifer; the quantity and impact of water taken from aquifer storage by pumpage; the magnitude and extent of cones of depression; and rates of head loss for each aquifer.
  • 2005 – 2006 “Study of Direct Withdrawal for Water Supply, Choctawhatchee River Near Bellwood, Alabama”.
    A study being conducted by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, co-sponsored by the Authority, to investigate the option of direct withdrawal from the Choctawhatchee River with off-stream storage near Bellwood, AL in northern Geneva County and southern Dale County to accomplish the water supply needs of the area.
  • 2006 – “Groundwater Monitoring Well with Data Collection in Covington County”.
    A project conducted by the US Geological Survey to establish a network of continuous-recording water-level monitoring wells in selected areas in Alabama to monitor effects of drought and other climate variability on groundwater levels and to determine effects of drought on groundwater recharge rates.
  • 2006 – 2007 “Water Quality Monitoring of the Choctawhatchee and Pea Rivers in southeast Alabama”.
    A study conducted by the Geological Survey of Alabama (GSA) for the CPYRWMA which evaluated current conditions and established a record of water quantity and quality variability at selected sites on the main stems of the Choctawhatchee and Pea Rivers to the Florida state line.
  • 2007 – “Elba and Geneva Major Levee Rehabilitation”.
    A project which rebuilt the levees around the cities of Elba and Geneva, Alabama. It was federally authorized and cost-shared by the Federal government and the State of Alabama. The soil composition, width, and height of the levees were improved making them stronger and more reliable.
  • 2007 – “An Investigation into the Feasibility of Additional Interconnections among Public Water Systems in Dale County, Alabama”.
    The sixteen water systems in Dale County were owned and operated by twelve public and private entities, and most of the systems were supplied from at least two deep wells. Some of the systems were not connected. This study developed an interconnection plan for all Dale County systems and estimated flows between systems.
  • 2009 – 2010 “Monitoring and Analyses of Water Quality and Biological Resources Required for an Application for a Clean Water Act Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the Little Choctawhatchee River Watershed in Southeast Alabama”.
    A study conducted for the CPYRWMA by GSA for chemical analyses of inorganic and organic constituents of water and sediment samples, sediment loading, and bacteria counts for 11 sites in the Little Choctawhatchee River Watershed.
  • 2010 – 2011 “Hydrogeologic Support for Water Source Development - Lithologic Descriptions and Geologic Interpretations of Drill Cuttings Samples and Geophysical Well Logs from the City of Enterprise Well No. 15, Coffee County, Alabama”.
    A project conducted by the GSA for the CPYRWMA and the City of Enterprise which provided on-site hydrogeologic support for drilling operations for two water supply test wells including lithologic descriptions of drill cuttings, stratigraphic interpretations and total well depth determinations along with analyses of geophysical logs and well design.
  • 2011 – 2014 “Comprehensive Water Management Plan”.
    The CPYRWMA and the GSA initiated development of a comprehensive Watershed Management Plan which consolidated, into one source, the water-related natural resource issues in the Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow River watersheds; available scientific knowledge and data; and outlined future water management options for the watersheds. It contains detailed data from more than 300 references covering 32 categories of watershed topics including current demographics, land use, water quantity, quality, conservation, biological resources, economic impacts, interstate issues, climate change, and education. It contains recommendations for action items pertaining to each addressed topic as well as options for policy development for selected topics to address implementation of management strategies.
  • 2013 – “Real Time Groundwater Monitoring System”.
    The project consists of the expansion of the Groundwater Assessment Program at the GSA to include two additional wells which employed cellular signals to transmit water level data real time from aquifers in southeast Alabama. These data indicate current aquifer conditions and climatic and production impacts as well as past recorded water level data and is posted on the GSA website.
  • 2014 – 2015 “Water Leak Detection Survey”.
    The Alabama Rural Water Association (ARWA) conducted a water leak survey for the CPYRWMA in rural water systems which could not afford to purchase the water-leak detection equipment or pay trained, experienced operators. The ARWA utilized digital sonic listening equipment to locate and isolate leaks in need of repair. Leak detection reduces financial losses and conserves water.
  • 2014 – “Computation of Annual Low-Flow Statistics at Continuous-Record Gaging Stations and Regionalization of Selected Low-Flow Characteristics for Unregulated Streams in Alabama”.
    Low-flow statistics in Alabama have not been updated since 1990; therefore, to provide better documentation of low characteristics for Alabama streams, the USGS conducted a multi-year study to update low-flow statistics at continuous-record stream flow gaging stations and developed low-flow equations for unregulated streams. The CPYRWMA served as one of several co-sponsors.
  • 2017 – “Surface Water Quality Monitoring for Water Entering Florida”.
    The GSA is conducting a multi-year study to assess the baseline water-quality conditions for the Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow Rivers in southeast Alabama for the CPYRWMA. The results will compare the quality of surface water departing Alabama and entering Florida. The work is documenting the concentration of inorganic and selected organic constituents under various streamflow conditions.