Salt Water Intrusion

Because saltwater features a higher mineral content compared to freshwater, it is denser and features a higher water pressure. Because of this, saltwater can push inland beneath the freshwater. Certain human activities, specifically groundwater pumping from coastal freshwater wells, have raised saltwater intrusion in numerous coastal areas. 

Water extraction drops the level of fresh groundwater, decreasing its water pressure and permitting saltwater to flow further inland. Other contributors to saltwater intrusion contain navigation channels or agricultural and drainage channels, which give conduits for saltwater to go inland and sea level increase. Saltwater intrusion also can be worsened by severe events such as hurricane storm surges.

Saltwater Intrusion Results From

Under natural circumstances, the seaward movement of freshwater stops saltwater through encroaching coastal aquifers and the interface between saltwater and freshwater is maintained close to the coast or far below land surface. This interface is in fact a diffuse zone where saltwater and freshwater combine and is known as the transition zone (or zone of dispersion).

Ground water pumping can decrease freshwater circulation toward coastal discharge areas and cause saltwater to be driven toward the freshwater zones of an aquifer. Saltwater intrusion reduces freshwater storage in the aquifers and, in extreme instances, can result in the abandonment of supply wells. Saltwater intrusion takes place by many mechanisms, such as vertical upconing close to discharging wells and lateral encroachment from coastal waters.

Salt Water Facts

Saltwater or salt water, is a geological word that refers to naturally taking place solutions made up of large concentrations of mixed, inorganic ions.


The water in the ocean comes from rivers that include dissolved salts and other minerals.

The water in rivers originates from melting snow, rain or ice that runs over rocks and soils containing minerals and salts.

Salts and some minerals are effortlessly dissolved in the water and carried out to the sea.

Did You Know?

The oceans are getting saltier. Slowly over millions of years as more and more salts are carried to the ocean the seawater is getting saltier.

The Lifeless Sea is actually salty lakes. It is so salty that nothing much can live in it and once you swim in them you do not sink.

Saltwater is more dense or thicker compared to freshwater so things float more effortlessly in saltwater.

Salt and minerals are not the only things carried by water into the ocean.

Everything dumped into storm water drains gets carried out to the ocean and pollutes it. (Things like oil, paint and chemicals dirty the water) 

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