Assessing Selected Natural and Anthropogenic Impacts on Freshwater Lens Morphology on Small Barrier Islands: Dog Island and St. George Island, Florida, USA

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salt-water/fresh-water relations, numerical modeling, water supply, coastal aquifers, coastal erosion

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The freshwater lens morphologies of the barrier islands Dog Island and St. George Island on the panhandle coast of Florida (FL), USA, are controlled to varying degrees by both natural and anthropogenic factors. Variable-density groundwater flow models confirm that spatial variability of recharge values can account for the observed lens asymmetry on these islands. The depth to the base of the lens does not vary significantly seasonally. Human development has altered recharge patterns in some areas, locally thinning the freshwater lens. Aqueduct water supply to St. George Island represents ∼7–25% of natural recharge; higher recharge rates are required to simulate the lens on St. George Island than on Dog Island. On both islands, coastal erosion rates are sufficiently rapid that the freshwater lens may not be in equilibrium with current boundary conditions.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Hydrogeology Journal, v. 14, issue 1, p. 131-145