Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Water Resource Management

Number of Pages



A network of 27 shallow groundwater monitoring wells in the Las Vegas Valley, Nevada, was sampled for selenium, nitrate, coliform bacteria and 37 volatile organic compounds. A distinct pattern of elevated levels of selenium, nitrates, and chloroform was observed in the developed portions of the valley. Evidence suggests that the probable sources for these contaminants are linked to the practice of high water-use irrigation for turfgrass landscaping. Selenium was observed to be concentrated in the upper 50 cm of an undisturbed soil sample, but can be mobilized by the application of irrigation water to the naturally seleniferous soils and transported to the shallow aquifer zone. Nitrates are also linked to landscape irrigation as a result of the application of nitrogen fertilizers to lawns. Chloroform is formed by the chlorination of municipal water supplies and can persist in shallow groundwater, serving as a tracer for secondary recharge of groundwater by irrigation water.


Aquifer; Bacteria; Coliform; Compounds; Contamination; Groundwater; Las Vegas; Nevada; Nitrate; Organic; Selenium; Shallow; Valley; Vegas; Volatile; Zone

Controlled Subject

Hydrology; Biogeochemistry; Environmental sciences

File Format


File Size

5160.96 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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