Last week, Dr. Jonathon Arthur, Director of Florida Geological Survey was selected to serve on the National Research Council Committee that is assessing the scientific aspects of the habitat conservation plan of the Edwards Aquifer Authority in Texas. He was chosen for this committee because of his experience in hydrogeology and hydrogeochemistry including aquifer storage and recovery. Dr. Arthur has been a member of several other committees including the NRC Committee on Sustainable Underground Storage of Recoverable Water and numerous committees related to the restoration of the Everglades.
“The Edwards Aquifer shares many characteristics of the Floridan, including karst and complex flow systems, as well as administrative controls similar to MFLs and alternative water resources such as aquifer storage and recovery,” said Dr. Arthur. “My participation in the committee will allow me to apply important information toward better understanding and protecting Florida’s karstic aquifers – our principal source of drinking water.”
The conservation plan is working to balance the aquifer while protecting threatened and endangered species, especially those that are only known to the area. Additionally, 2 million people in eight counties in and around San Antonio rely on the system for their drinking water.
Florida has five aquifer systems, but the Floridan aquifer is the major source of drinking water for the majority of the state. The Floridan covers most of the state from the western Panhandle all the way into south Florida, and is also the source for many of the springs in Florida.
Dr. Arthur hopes to bring back lessons learned from the review that can have a significant impact on relevant aspects of the aquifer systems in the state of Florida.