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Groundwater Could Boost San Diego’s Water Supply

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Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey are looking for water under Balboa Park. Local officials hope to tap the groundwater to increase local supplies. KPBS Reporter Ed Joyce has details.

The work is part an overall study to see how much underground water is in the San Diego area. Wes Danskin is the USGS scientist in charge of the project. He says the test wells will determine whether there's enough underground water to make a difference.

Danskin says scientists have already discovered something they didn't expect.

Danskin : We identified an aquifer at about 1,000 feet that we didn't understand previously was there. We didn't know it was there, about 600 feet thick. Very promising from our standpoint compared to the knowledge that we had before.

He says a hole was drilled nearly a quarter of a mile below the land surface. Danskin says samples taken from the hole indicate the earth and water from that depth is several million years old.

He says it will take several months to determine whether there's enough water to justify the cost of bringing it out for local use. He says eight wells will be drilled this year in different parts of the county.

Ed Joyce, KPBS News.

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