The Effectiveness of Cattlemans Detention Basin, South Lake Tahoe, California: Usgs Scientific Investigations Report 2006-5259 by Jena M Green, Teresa Jane Porri, Dr Randi Fredricks (Paperback / softback, 2011)
Lake Tahoe (Nevada-California) has been designated as an outstanding national water resource by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in part, for its exceptional clarity. Water clarity in Lake Tahoe, however, has been declining at a rate of about one foot per year for more than 35 years. To decrease the amount of sediment and nutrients delivered to the lake by way of alpine streams, wetlands and stormwater detention basins have been installed at several locations around the lake. Although an improvement in stormwater and swmelt ruff quality has been measured, the effectiveness of the detention basins for increasing the clarity of Lake Tahoe needs further study. It is possible that poor ground-water quality conditions exist beneath the detention basins and adjacent wetlands and that the presence of the basins has altered ground-water flow paths to nearby streams. A hydrogeochemical and ground-water flow modeling study was done at Cattlemans detention basin, situated adjacent to Cold Creek, a tributary to Lake Tahoe, to determine whether the focusing of storm and swmelt ruff into a confined area has (1) modified the ground-water flow system beneath the detention basin and affected transport of sediment and nutrients to nearby streams and (2) provided an increased source of solutes which has changed the distribution of nutrients and affected nutrient transport rates beneath the basin.
Dr Randi Fredricks, Jena M Green, Teresa Jane Porri