The Bureau of Economic Geology The University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences

 

Basin Fill Sandstone and Carbonate Aquifers, Basin and Range

(Arizona, Nevada, and California)

General Setting

The Mojave Basin in northwestern Arizona, southeastern California, and southern Nevada contains unconsolidated Tertiary sandstones in block-faulted basins and deeper Paleozoic carbonates. Neither of these two formations, individually, is ideal for CO2 sequestration. The basin-and-range Tertiary sandstones are very shallow in many parts of the basin and contain fresh water, whereas the carbonates are locally fractured, making predictions of projected fluid paths difficult. However, areas where Tertiary sandstones are deep and where the carbonates are minimally fractured may be potential sites for CO2 storage. Because the Paleozoic carbonates are so extensive in the southern basin-and-range structural province, the Mojave study area was extended to central and eastern Nevada, as well as western Utah in the vicinity of the Sevier Basin.

Information Search and Selection

The major sources of data for basin-and-range and deep carbonate aquifers in the region of the Mojave Basin are Brown (1976), Pool (1985), Thomas and others (1986), Harrill and others (1988), Anderson and others (1992), Prudic and others (1995), Dettinger and others (1995), Thomas and others (1996), Planert (1996), and Robson (1996). Major parameters for these formations are briefly described, with notes pertaining to the suitability of these stratigraphic units to be included as data sources.

Comments on Geologic Parameters

References

Anderson, T. W., Freethey, G. W., and Tucci, Patrick, 1992, Geohydrology and water resources of alluvial basins in south-central Arizona and parts of adjacent states: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1406-B, 67 p.

Brown, S. G., 1976, Preliminary maps showing ground-water resources in the lower Colorado River region, Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah: U.S. Geological Survey Hydrologic Investigations Atlas HA-542, 3 sheets.

Dettinger, M. D., Harrill, J. R., Schmidt, D. L., and Hess, J. W., 1995, Distribution of the carbonate rock aquifers and the potential for their development, southern Nevada and adjacent parts of California, Arizona, and Utah: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations WRI 91-4146, 100 p., 2 sheets.

Freethey, G. W., Pool, D. R., Anderson, T. W., and Tucci, Patrick, 1986, Description and generalized distribution of aquifer materials in the alluvial basins of Arizona and adjacent parts of California and New Mexico: U.S. Geological Survey Hydrologic Investigations Atlas HA-663, scale 1:500,000, 4 sheets.

Harrill, J. R., Gates, J. S., and Thomas, J. M., 1988, Major ground-water flow systems in the Great Basin region of Nevada, Utah, and adjacent states: U.S. Geological Survey Hydrologic Investigations Atlas HA-694-C, scale 1;1,000,000, 1 sheet.

Mitchell, G. C., and McDonald, R. E., 1986, History of Cenozoic extension in Central Sevier Desert, west-central Utah, from COCORP seismic reflection data: discussion: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, v. 70, no. 8, p. 1015-1021.

Planert, M., 1996, Ground water atlas of the United States, Segment 1: California and Nevada: U.S. Geological Survey Atlas.

Pool, D. R., 1985, Aquifer geology of alluvial basins of Arizona, in Anderson, T. W., and Johnson, A. I., eds., Regional aquifer systems of the United States, southwest alluvial basins of Arizona: American Water Resources Association Monograph 7, p. 25-36.

Prudic, D. E., Harrill, J. R., Burbey, and Thomas J., 1995, Conceptual evaluation of regional ground-water flow in the carbonate-rock province of the Great Basin, Nevada, Utah, and adjacent states: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper P-1409-D, 102 p.

Robson, S. G., 1996, Ground water atlas of the United States, Segment 2: Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico: U.S. Geological Survey Atlas.

Thomas, J. M., Mason, J. L., and Crabtree, J. D., 1986, Ground-water levels in the Great Basin region of Nevada, Utah, and adjacent states: U.S. Geological Survey Hydrologic Investigations Atlas HA-694-B, 2 sheets.

Thomas, J. M., Welch, A. H., and Dettinger, M. D., 1996, Geochemistry and isotope hydrology of representative aquifers in the Great Basin region of Nevada, Utah, and adjacent states: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1409-C, p. C1-C100.

U.S. Geological Survey, 1996, Ground water atlas of the United States, Segment 1.

Prepared by William Ambrose.

 
 
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