Southeastern Section - 54th Annual Meeting (March 17–18, 2005)

Paper No. 4
Presentation Time: 2:00 PM


GREENHALGH, Thomas H., Florida Geological Survey, 903 West Tennessee Street, Gunter Bldg. MS#720, Tallahassee, FL 32304 and BAKER, Alan E., Florida Geological Survey, FDEP, 903 W. Tennessee St, Tallahassee, FL 32304-7700,

Recently, the Florida Geological Survey (FGS) was asked to create an updatable “Florida Springs Protection Areas” map for the Florida Department of Community Affairs. The purpose of the map is to identify areas that contribute flow to Florida’s springs and provide growth and land use decision-makers with a published resource to assist them in protecting and restoring the quantity and quality of spring discharge. Utilizing data from Florida water management districts, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the FGS utilized GIS software, expert knowledge and interpretation to generate a map delineating springs protection areas. Initially, delineated springsheds and documented springs locational data layers were applied to a map of Florida. Next, a data layer identifying areas where the Floridan aquifer system (FAS) is overlain with less than 100 feet of overburden was applied. This layer was utilized to address recharge and vulnerability of the FAS to contamination. To refine the resulting springs protection areas identified to this point areas were removed where the FAS is known to be confined. Small isolated springs protection areas were merged to form a contiguous protection area. Then, utilizing a 2000 FAS potentiometric surface data layer, boundaries of the springs protection areas were further refined. Finally, a township buffer was added to address the lateral uncertainty of springshed boundaries, which are known to be dynamic. In addition, rules or policies stemming from this map can easily reference the township boundary. Several third magnitude springs (discharging <10 cubic feet per second) fell outside the buffered springs protection area. Utilizing published recharge rates, an area of 15 square miles would be required to generate this amount of flow. Circles encompassing 15 square miles centered on the spring vent were drawn as protection area boundaries for these springs.