Central New York Association of Professional Geologists

March Dinner Meeting and Speaker: Dr. David Eckhardt – USGS (retired) - "Investigating Aquifer Sources for Potable Drinking Water in Tanzania, East Africa"

  • Wednesday, March 18, 2020
  • 5:00 PM - 8:30 PM
  • Spaghetti Warehouse

Registration

  • Dinner and talk
  • Dinner and Talk
  • Dinner and Talk
  • Dinner and Talk for any student who is not a Student-member of the organization

David A.V. Eckhardt, U.S. Geological Survey (retired)

Presentation Abstract:

Tanzania, in East Africa, has an urgent need to develop sustainable supplies of potable drinking water. Much of the water for the capital region of Dar-es-Salaam is derived from reservoirs that suffer problems in water quality and distribution. A significant ground-water resource is available in an aquifer system that extends southward from the capital, beneath the coastal plain adjacent to the Indian Ocean. Initially, two exploratory test wells showed that the deep, confined unconsolidated aquifer deposits can provide good yields of potable water, but additional exploratory wells would be required before extensive development could proceed. International funding was provided to the Tanzanian government through the World Bank for drilling six more test wells for long-term aquifer monitoring, and for two supply wells. Oversight for the drilling project was provided by an independent consulting group, within which Dave was invited to participate.

This presentation describes the water-well drilling program, with its many technical and logistical difficulties, and some of the outcomes. Also, the presentation will give a cultural overview of Tanzania and its people, as well as a display of some of the natural resources and wildlife of East Africa.


Short Bio:

Education:

-- B.S degree in Geological Sciences from Lehigh University,

-- M.S. degree in Forest Hydrology from West Virginia University,  and

-- PhD degree in Environmental Science from Cornell University.

During his career with the U.S. Geological Survey, from 1974 through 2011, Dave focused on water-quality studies, mainly in the ground-water domain. He worked on regional water assessments in Pennsylvania, Long Island, and upstate New York, with special assignments to the Grand Canyon Environmental Sciences Group in Arizona, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In 2012, after 37 years with the USGS, he retired from the Ithaca NY office and became a private consultant (very part-time), where he provides technical assistance to the USEPA Superfund Program. During 2013-14, Dave participated in a regional water-well drilling program in Tanzania, which is the focus of his presentation.


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