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USGS Coastal Carolina Project

Atlantic Coastal PlainThe Coastal Carolina Project is an ongoing collaborative project to collect ground-water data in the Coastal Plain of North Carolina. Scientists from the Water Resources Discipline (WRD) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) partner with scientists from other USGS disciplines, Federal and State agencies, and universities to undertake several different types of ground-water research in the coastal area of the State. Each phase of the project has a different group of partners, as shown on the "Contacts" link below.

Although the WRD research focuses on ground water, it also includes surface-water and water-quality investigations, some of which include real-time data. Specific investigations include aquifer analysis, geologic framework identification, wetlands analysis, nutrient enrichment in the sounds, stratigraphic determinations, paleochannel delineation, hydrogeologic assessments, and large-scale mapping using light-imaging detection and radar (LIDAR).

Areas of investigation currently focus on saltwater intrusion, ground-water-level declines, ground-water movement across political boundaries, changes in the hydrologic regime, sediment erosion and deposition, contamination, and habitat loss and remediation. For more information regarding the Coastal Carolina Project, call the USGS office in Raleigh at (919) 571-4000.

Contacts Data Publications Links

2006 Project Areas

Cove City

Beginning February 27, 2006, the WRD and GD Eastern Earth Surface Processes Team return to the 2005 Cove City drill site for supplemental drilling. The objective of this drill session is to define the lower stratigraphic units at this location and to date the stratigraphic units using the fossil record, and to determine the thickness of the aquifers.

2005 Project Areas

Cove City

Cove City

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

For the 2005 Coastal Carolina drilling project, the WRD and the USGS Geologic Discipline (GD) will be drilling a deep corehole to bedrock in the Atlantic Coastal Plain near the Graingers Wrench Fault. On-site analysis of the core will include hydrologic, stratigraph, geologic, and lithologic logs, photographic documentation, borehole geophysics, and nannofossil preservation.

2004 Project Areas

Elizabethtown

Beginning July 8, 2004, the WRD and GD Eastern Earth Surface Processes Team return to the 2003 Elizabethtown drill site for supplemental drilling. The objective of this drill session is to define the lower stratigraphic units at this location and to date the stratigraphic units using the fossil record, and to determine the thickness of the aquifers.

Crystal Coast

Sampling

Data

Location

Photos

Began April 20, 2004, the WRD and GD Woods Hole are sampling resistivity levels in the lower Neuse River to learn more about surface water and ground water interactions in this estuarine environment.

Hope Plantation

Hope Plantation

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

Drilling of a continuous stratigraphic core hole began March 12, 2004 and was completed April 20, 2004 by the WRD and GD Eastern Earth Surface Processes Team. The well site is in the Roanoke River watershed, at the Hope Plantation approximately 6 miles southwest of Windsor, North Carolina, in Bertie County.

2003 Project Areas

Elizabethtown

Elizabethtown

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

Drilling of a continuous core stratigraphic drill hole began on August 11, 2003 and was completed August 26, 2003 by the WRD and GD Eastern Earth Surface Processes Team. A monitoring well is being installed in the Cape Fear aquifer. The well site is in the Cape Fear watershed, about 6 miles southeast of Elizabethtown, North Carolina, in Bladen County. Supplemental drilling to define the lower stratigraphic units and determine the thickness of the aquifers begins July 8, 2004.

Bodie Island

Bodie Island

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

Four monitoring wells were installed in the Bodie Island area as part of the ongoing Coastal Carolina Project by the WRD and the GD Coastal and Marine Geology Program. The USGS Geologic Discipline based in Woods Hole drilled six test holes in the Outer Banks of North Carolina centered near Bodie Island. In four of these six test holes the Water Resources Discipline installed monitoring wells to track water levels and salinity.

2002 Project Areas

Kitty Hawk

Kitty Hawk

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

The USGS Woods Hole Field Center, the State of North Carolina, and university researchers are mapping the regional sedimentary framework of the inner shelf of northern North Carolina to understand recent coastal processes, including erosion and the impacts of shoreline change. The USGS Water Resources Discipline of North Carolina installed piezometers in four holes in the Kitty Hawk region of Dare County. These wells will be used to monitor ground-water fluctuations and, when paired with additional data, can be used to monitor change.

2001 Project Areas

Kure Beach

Kure Beach

Program

Drilling

Data

Location

Photos

The USGS, in collaboration with the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, The University of North Carolina at Wilmington, East Carolina University, Duke University, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and The University of Delaware, began drilling a 1,500-foot corehole at Kure Beach, N.C., on May 21, 2001. This corehole is the first in a series that will be used to improve the understanding of the geology of the North and South Carolina Coastal Plain. The information will be useful to state and local agencies for managing and protecting ground-water resources, including problems of saltwater intrusion, increasing water demand, and ground-water contamination.

2005 Cooperating
Organizations

Craven County Schools
 
Division of Water Quality
 
UNC Wilmington
 
North Carolina Geological Survey

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Cove City Crystal Coast Hope Plantation Kure Beach Kitty Hawk Bodie Island Elizabethtown