Tree Coring as a Potential Site Characterization Tool of Shallow Groundwater Contamination

  • G. J. Harvey
  • D. A. Vroblesky


Activities by the Department of Defense (DOD) sometimes have resulted in groundwater contamination. These contaminants are usually either fuels, metals, or halogenated solvents. The subsurface is heterogeneous. Under the best of circumstances, investigating the subsurface has been an endeavor marked with technical difficulties and uncertainty. Investigating the subsurface in remote areas can be extremely difficult and expensive. Drilling wells requires specialized knowledge and equipment. Prior to drilling, utility surveys have to be performed, drilling locations determined, drilling permits obtained, and drilling crews lined up often months in advance. Difficulties commonly are encountered with both traditional drilling and push-technology equipment and with subsurface conditions that exist. Derived wastes such as drill cuttings and purge water must be handled in an appropriate manner. Areas of concern located in sites with difficult terrain or beneath heavily wooded areas, in riparian corridors, or marshes are often not sampled.


Tree Ring Groundwater Contamination Natural Capital Alluvial Aquifer Tree Core 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Brooks R. R., (1983): Biological Methods of Prospecting for Minerals, John Wiley & Sons, New York.Google Scholar
  2. Canadell J., Jackson R.B., Erhleringer J.R., Mooney H.A., SalaO.E., SchulzeE.D., (1996): Maximum rooting depth of vegetation types at the global scale. Oceologia108: 583–595.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. ConstanzaR., D’arge, R., DegrootR., FarberS., GrassoM., HannonB., LimburgK., NaeemS., O’neil R.V., ParueloJ., RaskinR.G., SuttonP., Van DenBeltM., (1997):The value of the world’s ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature, 387Google Scholar
  4. Nietch, C. T., Morris, J. T., Vroblesky, D. A., (1999), Biophysical mechanisms of trichloroethene uptake and loss in baldcypress growing in shallow contaminated ground water: Environmental Science and Technology, 33, p. 2899–2904. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Nzengung, V., (1988) Letter Report to Gregory J Harvey.Google Scholar
  6. Stone E. L., Kalisz P. J., (1991): On the maximum extent of tree roots. ForestEcology and Management46:59–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Vroblesky, D. A., (1990):Use of tree-ring chemistry to document historical groundwater events: (Ph.D. thesis) The George Washington University, Washington, D.C., 241 p.Google Scholar
  8. Vroblesky, D. A., Yanosky, T. M., (1990): Use of tree-ring chemistry to document historical ground-water contamination events: Ground Water, 28,no. 5, pp. 677–684.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Vroblesky, D. A., Yanosky, T. M., Siegel, F. R., (1992): Increased concentrations of potassium in heartwood of trees in response to ground-water contamination: Environmental Geology and Water Science, 19,no. 2, pp. 71–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Vroblesky, D. A., (1998):Trichloroethene and cis-1,2-dichloroethene concentrations in tree trunks at the Carswell Golf Course, Fort Worth, Texas, September 23–24, 1998: Letter report to Gregory Harvey, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio, December 14, 1998, 11 p.Google Scholar
  11. Vroblesky, D. A., Nietch, C. T., Morris, J. T., (1999a): Chlorinated ethenes from ground water in tree trunks: Environmental Science and Technology33, p. 510–515.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Vroblesky, D. A., Nietch, C. T., Morris, J. T., (1999b), Tracking ground-water contamination with tree cores: 4th USA/CIS Joint Conference on Environmental Hydrology and Hydrogeology; Hydrologic Issues for the 21st Century: Ecology, Environment, and Human Health, November 7–10,1999, San Francisco, California.Google Scholar
  13. Yanosky, T. M., Vroblesky, D. A., (1992): Relation of nickel concentrations in tree rings to groundwater contamination: Water Resources Research, 28, no. 8, pp. 2077–2083.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Yanosky, T. M., Vroblesky, D. A., (1995): Element analysis of tree rings in groundwater contamination studies, inLewis, T.E., ed., Tree Rings as Indicators of Ecosystem Health: Boca Raton, Florida, CRC Press, Inc., pp. 177–208.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. J. Harvey
    • 1
  • D. A. Vroblesky
    • 2
  1. 1.U.S. Air Force Aeronautical Systems Center Environmental Safety and Health DivisionWright-Patterson AFBOhioUSA
  2. 2.U.S. Geological SurveyColumbiaUSA

Personalised recommendations