2016 NGWA Groundwater Summit

Going with the Flow: Federal Funding Facilitates Progress for the U.S. National Ground-Water Monitoring Network

Monday, April 25, 2016: 11:40 a.m.
Confluence Ballroom B (The Westin Denver Downtown)
David R. Wunsch, Ph.D., PG , Delaware Geological Survey, Newark, DE
Mary Musick , Musick Groundwater Consulting, Wimberley, TX
Mike Wireman , Granite Ridge Groundwater, Boulder, CO
Robert Schreiber, PE, BCEE, D.WRE , Water Resources, CDM Smith
William L. Cunningham , Office of Groundwater, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA
Daryll Pope , New Jersey Water Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Lawrenceville, NJ

The SECURE Water Act, enacted in 2009, authorized the creation of the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network (NGWMN). Through the efforts of many non-federal stakeholders, and with the support of Congress, the NGWMN was appropriated $2.6M (through USGS) in federal funds in FY 2015. Congress is likely to provide appropriations through a Continuing Resolution for FY2016, which would keep the funds “flowing” for at least another fiscal year. Thus, the NGWMN implementation is bolstered by federal support, as well as ongoing initiatives that leverage existing monitoring programs and other innovative program support. The key to this success has been the coordination and communication among diverse participants, guided by the NGWMN implementation plan.

The NGWMN is a collaborative effort among federal, tribal, state, nongovernmental organizations; academia; and private industry volunteers. A brief progress report on NGWMN implementation will be presented, highlighting the commitment, coordination, and communication efforts of stakeholders. We will also present examples how participants are cooperatively leveraging federal support for the NGWMN, with guidance from the Subcommittee on Ground Water (SOGW), under the federal Advisory Committee on Water Information (ACWI). We will focus on: (1) adding new data providers, which is a specific high-priority goal for FY2016; (2) helping maintain and enhance participation of states already in the NGWMN; (3) collaboration between USEPA Regional Laboratories and data providers for testing water quality samples; (4) discussions with other federal agencies that maintain monitoring networks whose objectives and designs align with the NGWMN; and (5) initiating discussions with Tribal authorities, regional water districts, and other non-state data providers.

The progress report will include a summary of data providers as of the date of this presentation, along with anticipated progress for the remainder of FY2016 and FY2017, and future directions for the NGWMN. Details of these aspects of the NGWMN will be provided separately.

David R. Wunsch, Ph.D., PG, Delaware Geological Survey, Newark, DE
David R. Wunsch, Ph.D., is the Director and State Geologist of the Delaware Geological Survey. He formerly served as the Director of Science and Technology for NGWA. Wunsch has served on numerous committees for NGWA, and as an associate editor of the journal Groundwater. He served as President of the Association of American State Geologists (AASG), and represents AASG on the federal Advisory Committee for Water Information, and its Subcommittee on Ground Water. He is Licensed Professional Geologist in Kentucky, New Hampshire, and Delaware. Recently, Wunsch was awarded the American Geosciences Institute’s 2014 Outstanding Contribution to the Understanding of Geoscience award.

Mary Musick, Musick Groundwater Consulting, Wimberley, TX
Mary Musick has 30 years of experience in protecting groundwater quality. While working for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, she developed policies, rules, and guidance documents to prevent contamination of groundwater resources and chaired the Texas Ground Water Protection Committee. Her background also includes uranium exploration, mapping regional and statewide aquifer water quality, conducting contamination evaluations at hazardous waste sites, and developing various groundwater dependent endangered species policies and evaluations. Musick currently consults with the Ground Water Protection Council on policy and regulatory issues. She has a B.S. in Geology from the University of Texas at Austin and is a licensed professional geoscientist.

Mike Wireman, Granite Ridge Groundwater, Boulder, CO
Mike Wireman is recently retired from the US EPA where he served as a National Groundwater Expert. He is currently President of Granite Ridge Groundwater in Boulder, Colorado.

Robert Schreiber, PE, BCEE, D.WRE, Water Resources, CDM Smith
Mr. Schreiber is a registered professional engineer with over 44 years of experience in water resource planning and computerized engineering analysis. He graduated from MIT’s Civil Engineering Department where he focused on groundwater hydrology and water resource systems analysis. He is a senior technical leader specializing in modeling of groundwater flow and contaminant fate and transport, and serves as a company-wide resource at CDM Smith. He has served on the Federal Advisory Committee on Water Information as ASCE’s representative to and co-chair of its Subcommittee on Ground Water, focusing on implementation of a National Ground Water Monitoring Network. For NGWA, Mr. Schreiber has served as Chair of the Scientists and Engineers Division Board of Directors and on the NGWA Board of Directors.

William L. Cunningham, Office of Groundwater, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA
Bill Cunningham is the Chief of the U.S. Geological Survey Earth Systems Processes Division. This office is the single focal point for disciplinary and interdisciplinary process studies research and development. Prior to joining the ESPD, Bill was the Chief of the Office of Groundwater, and prior to that he worked on groundwater science investigations in the Ohio and North Carolina Water Science Centers. Cunningham also serves as Co-Chair of the Subcommittee on Ground Water for the Federal Advisory Committee on Water Information. He received undergraduate and graduate degrees from The Ohio State University.

Daryll Pope, New Jersey Water Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Lawrenceville, NJ
Daryll Pope has a B.S. in Watershed Science from Colorado State University and a Master's in Contaminant Hydrology from Oregon Graduate Institute. He has worked on groundwater studies and groundwater modeling throughout his career. Pope has been Groundwater Specialist at USGS New Jersey since 1995 and has been involved with the groundwater monitoring networks of the Science Center. He has been involved in several studies looking at groundwater availability.