Groundwater provides late-summer flow for many rivers and can create cool water upwelling critical for aquatic species during high temperatures, and groundwater is the only water source for springs and subterranean ecosystems which harbor a distinct and poorly understood fauna [1]. To develop an index of groundwater dependent streams we used the NHD 24,000- scale data set for all of California and assigned baseflow to stream segments based on U.S. Geological Survey data [23]. While this study does not seek to address groundwater management in the state, we hope the results provide a concrete depiction of groundwater dependent ecosystems in California and “put a face” on what is to many an abstract issue. Based on the quartile distributions, the HUCs in each ecoregion were given a score from 1–4 (See Methods) (Table 2). The number of springs per 1,000 hectares is variable at the state and regional scale. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0011249.g008. 2010). The BFI calculation implements a deterministic procedure developed by the British Institute of Hydrology [24]. The Nature Conservancy, San Francisco, California, United States of America. Groundwater use has increased from an estimated 9 million acre feet in 1947, to 15 million acre feet in 2002. As each of these frameworks is further refined, their differences are becoming less discernible. After filtering, a total of 1,046,983 ha of wetlands were included in the analysis (522,625 ha were omitted). 0 = no springs. Legal. For example, in the Great Basin and Mojave deserts, planned groundwater withdrawal is expected to greatly reduce spring discharge [9]. The map of the California coast will amaze you just how many miles of beautiful beaches both in northern and southern California there are. The Arizona ecoregion map was compiled at a scale of 1:250,000. This effort provides a statewide index of groundwater dependency. The Colorado has the lowest with only 31 percent of the HUC12 units in that region containing springs. California Department of Fish and Game; 11/23/2010. In terms of land area, HUCs with a rank of 4 (75th–100 percentile) total 26% of the land area in the North Coast, 23% of the land are in the Sacramento River and 20% of the Tulare regions. No, Is the Subject Area "Ecosystems" applicable to this article? 2016-1021. These are among the most productive ecosystems in the world ocean. The disconnect between ecological and human uses of groundwater is important, because it suggests that policies that protect groundwater for human uses may not necessarily protect GDEs. Potential conservation strategies could involve identifying spring ecosystems that provide critical habitat for endemic and threatened species and developing a conservation plans that provide functional protection of the diverse and rare spring ecosystems. As can be seen in Figure 5, the greatest density of groundwater dependent wetlands is found in the North Lahontan region where groundwater dependent wetlands average 80 hectares per 1,000 hectares of HUC12 units. This course surveys the diversity, structure and functioning of California’s ecosystems through time and the ways they have influenced and responded to human activities and stewardship. here. The Sacramento River region is characterized by strong orographic influences of the Sierra Nevada which high yearly precipitation totals (∼1,000mm), 50% falling as snow [11]. California’s grasslands, oak woodlands and riparian areas are the target of local, state and national funding to support conservation of species and ecosystem services. However, in this region 20 percent of the land area is ranked as 4 for baseflow index – meaning that between 66–100% of stream discharge on 20% of the land area, comes from groundwater, making groundwater an important component of the stream ecosystem. The mean baseflow of reaches by HUC unit ranged from 27 percent (San Francisco Bay) to 60 percent (North Lahontan) of the total annual stream flow. We did this using BFI data from the U.S. Geological Survey [23]. Percent of HUC12 units ranking 1–4 for groundwater dependent wetlands and vegetation alliances per hydrologic region. Get directions, maps, and traffic for California. No, Is the Subject Area "Spring" applicable to this article? A Roman numeral hierarchical scheme has been adopted for different levels of ecological regions. We report here on the application of this method across California, but believe the method can be expanded to regions where spatial data exist. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0011249.t001. the documents to your computer and open them with Adobe Reader. The book provides a deep dive into the functions, management, and diversity of each ecosystem thanks to contributions from over 150 different authors. No, Is the Subject Area "Surface water" applicable to this article? A lock ( Fire’s dynamic nature and great complexity are amplified by the state’s diverse topography, climate, and vegetation. Concentrations of GDE clusters (all three types) are located at the highest percentage (in terms of land area) in the North Coast, North Lahontan, and Sacramento River hydrologic regions, three distinct hydrologic and climatic regions. Ecosystems Ecosystem-Based Management on the West Coast. A total of 772 HUC12 units (14%) ranked as high (8–12) and are distributed throughout all of the hydrologic regions (Table 3, Figures 9 and 10). This is a low resolution poster map of the Grand Canyon region provided by the Grand Canyon Monitoring and Research Center (U.S. Geological Survey, Southwest Biological Science Center). We assigned a baseflow index (BFI) (defined as the ratio of baseflow to total flow in a stream) to each HUC12 in the study area. Examples of HUC12 analyses units in the Southern California hydrologic region. We anticipate the results of this study may help inform conservation of groundwater-dependent biodiversity by illuminating the extensive distribution of groundwater dependent ecosystems throughout the state. For planning purposes, California has been divided by the DWR into 10 hydrologic regions which correspond to the state's major drainage areas (Figure 1). Although groundwater is only one factor in ecosystem sustainability, efforts are needed to make groundwater use and existing conservation practices more compatible. Map represents the percent of stream discharge composed of groundwater (baseflow index) per HUC12 unit. The Colorado River region is the sparsest in terms of the number of HUCs with groundwater dependent wetlands, where only 49% of the HUC units in that region contained groundwater dependent wetlands (Figure 6). The Central Coast and Tulare Lake had the lowest densities with a mean of 10.3 and 10.6 ha per 1,000 ha, respectively. This poster is the result of a collaborative project primarily between U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Region IX, USEPA National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (Corvallis, Oregon), California Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)–Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), U.S. Department of the Interior–Geological Survey (USGS), and other State of California agencies and universities. This dynamic and diverse upwelling current system is highly productive, supporting an important ocean economy, including recreational and commercial fishing, tourism, and shipping. 2010, Mapping Groundwater Dependent Ecosystems in California: PLoS One. Learn how to create your own. In 1914, a system of appropriating surface water rights was created by the state through a permitting process, but groundwater was not included in that regulatory process. Mean baseflow per hydrologic region was greatest in the North Coast, North Lahontan, Sacramento, San Joaquin, South Lahontan and Tulare Lake hydrologic regions where >50% of the total streamflow is attributed to groundwater. Currently (Spring 2010), California faced a third consecutive year of drought conditions. In addition, GO-Biz administers the California Innovation Hub (iHub) Network staff, a collection of 14 designated partners, consisting of incubators, accelerator and economic development agencies, that are available to assist entrepreneurs who are seeking to plug into the innovation ecosystem of California. Is the Subject Area "Wetlands" applicable to this article? In the Tulare Lake region, 62% of the land area contains no springs, and 21% of the land area contains no groundwater wetlands. Water demands in the Sacramento region total 8.7 million acre feet, 31% of which is met by groundwater (Table 1). The remaining 99% is stored in either icecaps/glaciers (69%) or in groundwater (30%). United States. The poster map was exported from ESRI ArcGIS Desktop as … Displaying top 8 worksheets found for - Ecosystems In California. Level II divides the continent into 50 regions (Commission for Environmental Cooperation Working Group, 1997, map revised 2006). The USGS acknowledges that the method may not yield the true base flow as might be determined by a more sophisticated analysis, however, has found the index to be consistent and indicative of base flow. For example, the Sacramento hydrologic region contains high concentrations of GDE clusters, and also is an area heavily reliant on groundwater withdrawals to meet urban, agricultural and industrial demands [10]. California, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. See Table 2 for definition of scores. 0 = none. Regions with the greatest land area ranking as none (0) or very low (1–3) are the Colorado (67%), South Coast (48%) and Tulare (47%) (Figures 9 and 10). In terms of percentage, the Central Coast region has the greatest number of HUCs containing springs at 69%. A total of 493 (11%) of the HUC12 units do not have any groundwater dependent ecosystems according to our analysis (index score = 0) (Table 3, Figures 9 and 10). Because of groundwater's accessibility and quantity, groundwater is a vital source of freshwater for human communities throughout the world [1], [2], [3]. For example, in Kings County, newspaper articles report that local well drilling businesses are busier than ever, as water deliveries from the Sacramento Delta to farmers in the Westlands Water District have decreased. Wrote the paper: JKH. We assigned BFI values to each HUC12 unit using the following logic: Using these methods all HUC12 units were assigned the best estimate of baseflow for streams within the HUC boundaries and thus dependency on groundwater. The California Current Large Marine Ecosystem is a dynamic, diverse environment in the eastern North Pacific Ocean spanning nearly 3,000 km from southern British Columbia to Baja California, and includes the United States Exclusive Economic Zone, the coastal land-sea interface, and adjacent terrestrial watersheds. similar to 39.6 million residents, California is the most populous U.S. permit and the third-largest by area. In summary, protection and management of groundwater-dependence ecosystems are potentially hindered by lack of information on their diversity, abundance and location. Level I is the coarsest level, dividing North America into 15 ecological regions. The lowest ranking HUC12 unit could receive is 0 if there are no springs, no groundwater dependent wetlands and no stream reaches with a baseflow component. First, we developed one composite spatial layer of wetlands and groundwater dependent vegetation alliances from various sources including but not limited to the U.S. Forest Service vegetation mapping effort known as CALVEG [17], the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium's National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) [18], and the Fish and Wildlife Service's National Wetlands Inventory [19]. Second, to omit wetlands that may not be groundwater dependent, we developed criteria for wetland inclusion in the spatial database. There groundwater overdraft resulted in groundwater levels declining below sea level which caused seawater to intrude into fresh water aquifers [14]. PDF documents opened from your California's mapped 431 designated groundwater basins hold approximately 850 million acre-feet of water, only about half of which is close enough to the surface to be pumped economically [10] (Figure 1). At the subwatershed scale, the HUC unit with the highest density of springs is located in the Central Coast, where 67 springs occur in a 13,962-ha HUC unit; the lowest density is found in the South Coast hydro unit where just 1 spring was mapped in a 40,455-haHUC unit. Datasets and variables used to create the composite layer of groundwater dependent wetlands and vegetation. The percentage of the land area without springs is found in the Colorado region where 70% of the land area have no springs; in the San Joaquin where 53% have no springs, South Lahontan 63% and Tulare (62%). Western Geographic Science CenterU.S. Explanations of the methods used to define these ecoregions are given in Omernik (1995), Omernik and others (2000), and Omernik and Griffith (2014). Yes While development of new surface water diversions and storage has slowed, new groundwater development continues at a strong pace. In terms of land area the North Coast at 25%, North Lahontan at 39% and Sacramento at 36% had the greatest percentage of land with high groundwater dependence index (Score = 8–12). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0011249.g010, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0011249.t003. The authors are grateful to Brian Cohen for assistance in compiling data, Anthony Saracino and Maurice Hall for their critical reading of the manuscript, and Duncan Patten and one anonymous reviewer for their insightful and helpful reviews. Griffith, G.E., Omernik, J.M., Smith, D.W., Cook, T.D., California Fish and Game 97(4). For all HUC12 units with a USGS stream gage present somewhere in the watershed, BFI values were assigned from gage data, For all HUC12 units with streams and no stream gages present, we assigned BFI using interpolated values from a 1-km raster dataset for the conterminous U.S. estimated from stream gages. The California Current Regional Ecosystem runs from the southern-most point of California, up through Washington. Percent of HUC12 units ranking 1–4 for springs per hydrologic region. Because change will be pervasive, additional assessments of species or ecosystem vulnerabilities will be most useful if conducted in support of applied efforts to adapt ecosystems to … Level IV, depicted here for California, is a further refinement of level III ecoregions. Prepared in collaboration with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region IX, Regional Applied Research Effort (RARE) program. Yes Ecoregions denote areas of general similarity in ecosystems and in the type, quality, and quantity of environmental resources; they are designed to serve as a spatial framework for the research, assessment, management, and monitoring of ecosystems and ecosystem components. There are many other aquifers in the state that provide locally important water sources that are not within the mapped groundwater basin boundaries, and are not well understood. Secure .gov websites use HTTPS They are designed to serve as a spatial framework for the research, assessment, management, and monitoring of ecosystems and ecosystem components. The percentage of land area where stream discharge is most dependent on groundwater is found in the North Coast, Sacramento River and Tulare Lake regions. Springs are mapped as point features in the NHD Plus dataset and therefore do not contain areal extent. The chaparral of southern California is echoed in the old world Mediterranean maquis, the Chilean matorral, South African fynbos and the Australian mallee scrub communities. The index is the sum of groundwater dependent variables (springs, groundwater dependent wetlands and associated vegetation alliances and baseflow index). The coast of California from Monterey Bay south to the Mexican border, and inland from San Francisco Bay Area to the Sierra Nevada foothills contain California's Mediterranean ecoregions. By developing a methodology that uses existing datasets to locate GDEs, this assessment addresses that knowledge gap. Raging from ecosystems as far and wide as Alpine Tundra and barren desert, Southern California is remarkably diverse. Regional collaborative projects such as this one in California, where some agreement has been reached among multiple resource-management agencies, are a step toward attaining consensus and consistency in ecoregion frameworks for the entire nation. An index of groundwater dependency was developed by mapping and ranking three ecosystem types – springs, wetlands streams as follows: Seeps and springs were extracted from the National Hydrography Dataset Plus [16] database and assigned to each HUC12 unit. The marine ecosystems off the coast of California are among the most productive in the world, fueled by upwelling of cool, nutrient-rich waters. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge. By developing a methodology that uses existing datasets to locate GDEs, this assessment addresses that knowledge gap. It is important to note that the seeps and springs database does not contain information on the amount of flow emanating from the seeps/springs. Springs are most densely concentrated (high percentage of land area ranking 4) at the HUC12 scale in the North Coast and North Lahontan, whereas groundwater dependent wetlands and associated vegetation alliances are concentrated in the North and South Lahontan and Sacramento River hydrologic regions. Performed the experiments: MM. Base flow is the component of the streamflow that can be attributed to groundwater discharge into streams. Click through the PLOS taxonomy to find articles in your field. At level III, the continental United States contains 105 ecoregions and the conterminous United States has 85 ecoregions (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2013). These HUCs are clustered in the Colorado and South Lahontan regions where 38 and 24 percent of the HUC units, respectively, have no groundwater dependent ecosystems. Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format As a result, California is the only state in the country without a comprehensive statewide groundwater management system. The North Coast region has the greatest number of springs per area with a mean of 0.91 per 1,000 ha; the Colorado River hydrologic region has the lowest with a mean value of 0.44 per 1,000 ha. Locate startups by industry and location, check for the newest and the top ranking startups in each location, and add your own. The intent of the analysis is to provide a visualization of the biodiversity nexus of groundwater across the landscape– to better understand what biological targets are most dependent on groundwater and how they are distributed across the state. Resultant polygons of groundwater dependent wetlands were assigned to HUC12 units and density calculated as area of groundwater dependent wetlands per hectare. PLOS ONE promises fair, rigorous peer review, The California coastline hosts a variety of ecosystems ranging from sand dunes to rolling grasslands to mixed evergreen forests. In this way an index of groundwater dependency was developed that ranged from 0 to 12. The relative importance of each characteristic varies from one ecological region to another regardless of the hierarchical level. The raw density values were categorically scored (from 0–4) for each HUC12 using distribution quartiles (Table 2). Get directions, maps, and traffic for California. California has great ecological and biological diversity. coastal) and more arid regions. By recognizing the spatial differences in the capacities and potentials of ecosystems, ecoregions stratify the environment by its probable response to disturbance (Bryce and others, 1999). The geographic study boundary is confined to watersheds that flow into California's boundaries and omits those watersheds that flow into adjacent states (such as the Great Basin streams). As stated earlier, to make biogeographic comparisons, the HUC12 unit variables were binned and summarized at the DWR hydrologic basin scale. Investigate the gallery's eight Zones, each of which explores a different ecological principle. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0011249.g009. Analyzed the data: JKH. coastal) and more arid regions. HUCs were ranked as follows based on quartile distribution: 1 = (.001–0.247 springs/1,000ha); 2 = (0.21–0.44 springs/1,000ha); 3 = (0.441–0.94 springs/1,000ha); 4 = 0.942–11.8 springs/1,000 ha). The North Lahontan and South Lahontan Lake regions had the greatest percentage of HUCs with scores of 3 and 4 totaling 81% and 76%, respectively. HUC12 units with the lowest rankings (1–3) were concentrated in the South Lahontan and Colorado River regions where >20% and >30% of the HUCs, respectively, ranked very low. Tallyn, E., Moseley, K., and Johnson, C.B., 2016, Ecoregions of California (poster): To understand ecosystems, we must first catalog the location and makeup of each unique ecosystem on Earth. Groundwater here is also important to both urban and agricultural uses, accounting for 41 percent of the region's total annual supply of 10 million acre-feet of water, and 35 percent of all groundwater use in the state [10]. Yes They are designed to serve as a spatial framework for the research, assessment, management, and monitoring of ecosystems and ecosystem components. On this basis, a number of groundwater dependent ecosystem types are recognized and addressed in this paper: To protect ecosystems that depend on groundwater a basic understanding of types and where they occur is needed. 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