Debra Perrone, PhD
Researching water scarcity challenges facing society.
Integrating water quality, quantity, and policy sciences.
Debra Perrone is an Assistant Professor of UCSB’s Environmental Studies Program and a non-resident fellow of Stanford’s Water in the West Program. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of California, Debra was a postdoctoral research scholar at Stanford University with a dual appointment in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Woods Institute for the Environment. She received her PhD in Environmental Engineering at Vanderbilt University in 2014 and was awarded first honors as the Graduate School’s Founder’s Medalist. Debra Perrone is a first-generation college attendee.
Big Data Offers Promise of Better Groundwater Management
To sustainably manage groundwater, water managers and regulators currently rely upon understanding the depths at which groundwater transitions from fresh (shallower) to more saline (deeper). This base of fresh water, while important, remains poorly understood. Here we show that, in California, 1) available base-of-fresh-water data do not represent actual base of fresh water, as exemplified by the widespread occurrence of fresh water deeper than the defined bases of fresh water, and 2) wells are already penetrating or encroaching on the defined bases of fresh water. We conclude that using current base-of-fresh-water data may limit efforts to manage deep groundwater effectively.