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Panoche Valley Solar Project

  • Panoche Valley Solar Project
  • Panoche Valley Solar Project
  • Panoche Valley Solar Project
  • Panoche Valley Solar Project

Kleinfelder was retained for the Panoche Valley Solar Project in the County of San Benito, California, to perform aquifer testing and groundwater modeling. Kleinfelder also provided expert Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and litigation support for this project.

Determining Effects of Sustained Groundwater Pumping 

The project site consisted primarily of vacant land located in the Panoche Valley drainage basin and has since been developed with a photovoltaic solar power generation facility; approximately 2,492 acres encompass the power generation facility. Groundwater was proposed as a source of water for construction and ongoing site maintenance. The valley is filled with intermingled and interbedded coarse-grained and fine-grained sediments of relatively high groundwater transmissivity. Kleinfelder conducted aquifer testing and provided data analysis and numerical groundwater flow modeling simulations of the Panoche Valley. The work was performed to evaluate potential adverse well interference effects due to sustained groundwater pumping anticipated during construction of the project and subsequent project maintenance. 

Groundwater Modeling 

Pumping test results were analyzed to calculate aquifer parameters that were used to develop a numerical groundwater flow model of the Panoche Basin. Numerical flow simulations of proposed project groundwater extractions were performed using MODFLOW-USG.  The results of numerical modeling suggested that there would not be significant well-interference effects due to project pumping at groundwater supply wells within the Panoche Valley. 

Project Results 

Kleinfelder performed groundwater monitoring and reporting during site construction and post-construction maintenance. Monitoring during this period of maximum groundwater extraction confirmed the model predictions that basin impacts would not be significant. 

Project Details

County of San Benito, CA

Panoche Valley Solar, LLC