Overpumping of groundwater causing soil subsidence, say water experts
Madera County is in danger of a mass subsidence — or sinking — of soil in its west side near the San Joaquin and Fresno Rivers due to the overpumping of groundwater, according to the Maderea County Water Advisory Commission.
A two-year study of the area shows that the land is sinking, but it’s fairly evident even without the use of surveying, said Bob Stanfield, chair of the Water Advisory Commission, who last week presented the problem to the board.
“The ground is actually two feet lower than it was two years ago,” Stanfield said. “You can see it. Two years ago the well pump sat on top of the soil, now it’s sticking out two feet above the soil because that’s how much (the soil) has dropped.”
The sinking is likely to continue as the groundwater is depleted to irrigate nearby farmland, Stanfield said...