Hydrology - SCDNR Open-File Report 7

A History of Pumpage from Water Wells in the Upper Floridan Aquifer in South Carolina and Georgia, 1886 to 1986

Michael W. Dale


Ground water from the upper Floridan aquifer has served historically as the principal source of public, industrial, and farm-irrigation supply for coastal southern South Carolina and Georgia since the first Floridan well was drilled in 1884. The estimated withdrawal from the upper Floridan in 1890 was 6 mgd (million gallons per day) at Savannah. The withdrawal rate increased modestly to 14 mgd by 1900, including 9 mgd in Savannah and 2 to 5 mgd at Brunswick. Driven primarily by industrial growth in Georgia, withdrawals of upper Floridan water grew to 140 mgd in 1943 and to 310 mgd in Georgia by 1977.

The largest water users in Georgia are the industries located in Savannah, Brunswick, Doctortown (near Jessup), and St. Marys in Georgia. The peak withdrawal rate in South Carolina was 16 mgd in 1986. The maximum withdrawal was on Hilton Head Island, where pumpage peaked at 13.1 mgd.

This open-file report is available for review in the SCDNR's Columbia office.