JWARP  Vol.9 No.13 , December 2017
Colorado Water Watch: Real-Time Groundwater Monitoring for Possible Contamination from Oil and Gas Activities
Currently, only a few states in the U.S. (e.g. Colorado and Ohio) require mandatory baseline groundwater sampling from nearby groundwater wells prior to drilling a new oil or gas well. Colorado is the first state to regulate groundwater testing before and after drilling, requiring one pre-drilling sample and two additional post-drilling samples within 6 - 12 months and 5 - 6 years of drilling, respectively. However, the monitoring method is limited to ex-situ sampling, which offers only a snapshot in time. To overcome the limitations and increase monitoring effectiveness, a new groundwater monitoring system, Colorado Water Watch (CWW), was introduced as a decision-making tool to support the state’s regulatory agency and also to provide real-time groundwater quality data to both industry and the public. The CWW uses simple in-situ water quality sensors based on surrogate sensing technology that employs an event detection system to screen the incoming data in near real-time. This objective of this study was to improve the understanding of groundwater quality in Wattenberg field and assess event detection methods. The data obtained from 5 sites (the earliest monitoring sites in the CWW network) for 3 years of the regional monitoring network in Wattenberg field is used to illustrate the background information about groundwater quality and its changing trend, and make comparisons between two outlier detection methods, CANARY and simple moving median.
Cite this paper: Li, H. , Son, J. , Hanif, A. , Gu, J. , Dhanasekar, A. and Carlson, K. (2017) Colorado Water Watch: Real-Time Groundwater Monitoring for Possible Contamination from Oil and Gas Activities. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 9, 1660-1687. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2017.913104.

[1]   Rule 609: Statewide Groundwater Baseline Sampling and Monitoring; Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission: Denver, CO, 2013.

[2]   Son, J.H. and Carlson, K.H. (2014) Real-Time Surrogate Analysis for Potential Oil and Gas Contamination of Drinking Water Resources. Applied Water Science, 5, 283-289.

[3]   Colorado Oil and Gas Conversation Commission GIS Data.

[4]   US Geological Survey DJ Basin GIS Data.

[5]   Canary User’s Manual Version 4.3.2; EPA 600/R-08/040B; United States Environmental Protection Agency: Washington DC, 2012.