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Water glossary



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Water Glossary - G

  • Gaging station: The site on a stream, lake or canal where hydrologic data is collected.

  • Gallon: A unit that is now almost entirely out of date. It is equivalent to 3.785 liters.

  • Gallon: A unit of volume. A U.S. gallon contains 231 cubic inches, 0.133 cubic feet, or 3.785 liters. One U.S. gallon of water weighs 8.3 lbs.

  • Geohydrology: A term which denotes the branch of hydrology relating to subsurface or subterranean waters; that is, to all waters below the surface.

  • Geologic erosion: Normal or natural erosion caused by geological processes acting over long geologic periods and resulting in the wearing away of mountains, the building up of floodplains, coastal plains, etc.

  • Geopressured reservoir: A geothermal reservoir consisting of porous sands containing water or brine at high temperature or pressure.

  • Geyser: A periodic thermal spring that results from the expansive force of super heated steam.

  • Giardia: A microorganism that is commonly found in untreated surface water and can be removed by filtration. It is resistant to disinfectants such as chlorine.

  • Glacier: A huge mass of ice, formed on land by the compaction and re-crystallization of snow, that moves very slowly downslope or outward due to its own weight.

  • Grab sample: A sample taken at a given place and time. Compare composite sample.

  • Granular activated carbon: Pure carbon heated to promote "active" sites which can adsorb pollutants. Used in some home water treatment systems to remove certain organic chemicals and radon.

  • Gray water: Domestic wastewater composed of washwater from kitchen sinks, bathroom sinks and tubs, clothes washers, and laundry tubs.

  • Greenhouse effect: The warming of the earth's atmosphere caused by a build-up of carbon dioxide or other trace gases; it is believed by many scientists that this build-up allows light from the sun's rays to heat the earth but prevents a counterbalancing loss of heat.

  • Greywater: Wastewater from clothes washing machines, showers, bathtubs, hand-washing, lavatories and sinks that are not used for disposal of chemical or chemical-biological ingredients.

  • Groundwater: Generally all subsurface water as distinct from surface water; specifically, that part of the subsurface water in the saturated zone (a zone in which all voids are filled with water) where the water is under pressure greater than atmospheric.

  • Groundwater discharge: Ground water entering coastal waters, which has been contaminated by land-fill leachates, deep well injection of hazardous wastes and septic tanks.

  • Groundwater disposal: Wastewater that is disposed of through the ground either by injection or seepage. This includes the following discharge methods; absorption beds, injection wells, drainfields, percolation ponds, rapid infiltration basins, spray fields, and land application systems. Land application systems or reuse systems are considered a ground-water disposal as treated wastewater used to irrigate is generally intended to filter down through the soil.

  • Groundwater hydrology: The branch of hydrology that deals with groundwater; its occurrence and movements, its replenishment and depletion, the properties of rocks that control groundwater movement and storage, and the methods of investigation and utilization of ground water.

  • Groundwater law: The common law doctrine of riparian rights and the doctrine of prior appropriation as applied to ground water.

  • Groundwater recharge: The use of reclaimed wastewater, by surface spreading or direct injection, to prevent saltwater intrusion into freshwater aquifers, to store the reclaimed water for future use, to control or prevent ground subsidence, and to augment non-potable or potable ground water aquifers.

  • Groundwater reservoir: An aquifer or aquifer system in which ground water is stored. The water may be placed in the aquifer by artificial or natural means.

  • Groundwater runoff: The portion of runoff which has passed into the ground, has become ground water, and has been discharged into a stream channel as spring or seepage water.

  • Groundwater storage: The storage of water in groundwater reservoirs.

  • Gully: A deeply eroded channel caused by the concentrated flow of water.

  • Gully reclamation: Use of small dams of manure and straw; earth, stone, or concrete to collect silt and gradually fill in channels of eroded soil.

Water glossary