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Title:Ground-water levels in Illinois through 1961
Author(s):Russell, Robert Ray
Geographic Coverage:Illinois

Systematic measurements of ground-water levels in Illinois were started in the early 1930’s in the Chicago region. Measurements were made in 1961 in 220 observation wells in 42 counties throughout the state.

Water levels in wells in artesian aquifers are influenced by such factors as atmospheric pressure, earthquakes, surface loading, and withdrawals from wells. Water levels in water-table aquifers are affected in large part by direct recharge from precipitation, evapotranspiration, discharge of ground water to streams, and withdrawals from wells.

In areas remote from pumping centers, no long-term continuing trends of general rise or decline of the water table are discernible. The water table in Illinois under natural conditions declines in the late spring, summer, and early fall; water levels generally begin to recover late in the fall. The rise of water levels is especially pronounced in the wet spring months. A large part of central and southern Illinois experienced a severe drought beginning early in 1952 and ending in most areas during the spring of 1955. As a result, ground-water levels declined to record-low stages especially in the southern one-half of Illinois. However, large quantities of ground water taken from storage within the ground-water reservoir were replenished during succeeding years as precipitation increased.

In heavily pumped areas, changes in water levels caused by pumping are superimposed on seasonal and secular fluctuations due to natural phenomena. In some instances large developments of ground water have caused pronounced and serious declines of water levels. For example, water levels in a deeply buried bedrock aquifer in the Chicago region declined more than 650 feet from 1864 to 1961, as pumpage increased from 0.2 million gallons per day (mgd) to 96.5 mgd during the same period. Water levels in a shallow sand and gravel aquifer in the East St. Louis area declined at some places more than 40 feet from 1900 to 1960, as pumpage increased from 2.1 mgd to 93.0 mgd during the same period. Smaller, but significant, declines have been recorded in several other heavily pumped areas. There are many areas of ground-water development where serious water-level declines have not occurred.

Issue Date:1963
Publisher:Illinois State Water Survey
Series/Report:Illinois State Water Survey. Report of Investigation ; no. 45
Genre:Technical Report
Description:Bibliography: p. 26.
Enumeration continues through succeeding title.
Rights Information:Copyright 1963 Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-11-15
Identifier in Online Catalog:738713
OCLC Identifier:(OCoLC)ocm03896677

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