Steve Sibray

Steve Sibray

  • Contact Information
  • My Story
  • Publications
  • Background
  • Interests
  • Grants

Contact Information

TitleEmeritus - Hydrogeologist
Faculty RankAssociate Professor Emeritus
Address Off Campus
4502 Ave IScottsbluff NE
  • office: 308-632-1382
VitaeDownload file


My Story

Hello, I'm Steven Sibray, and I'm an associate geoscientist and hydrogeologist (groundwater geologist) at the University of Nebraska Panhandle Research and Extension Center in Scottsbluff.

My recent research projects have focused on the study of groundwater, particularly in the Panhandle aquifers. For example, of late I have collaborated with the U.S. Geological Survey and the North Platte Natural Resources District, to study the chemistry and age of groundwater in the Pumpkin Creek valley.

Having reliable, efficient groundwater monitoring systems is critical for effective research and conservation plans. My experience with groundwater systems has allowed me to help several natural resource districts establish important groundwater-monitoring networks, which will assist conservationists, land users and researchers.

My role in these projects has been to acquire geophysical data and interpret the subsurfgeology. This is valuable because it helps researchers, policy makers and water industry people better understand the groundwater geology of a given area.

I often share my knowledge of Nebraska's groundwater with the public, so they can better understand the distribution and quality of the state's underground water supply.

I began working at UNL in 1989 as an assistant research hydrogeologist.

Selected Publications

Kunts, T. Sibray, S. Reedy, J., Yill, J., Hallum, D., 2020, A.R., Mapping the Base of the High Plains Aquifer using Borehole Geophysical Logs and Airborne Electromagnetic Surveys in Western Nebraska . University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Conservation and Survey Division, Open File Report 210, 21 pp.Online
Tracy, J., Johnson, J., Konikow, L., Miller, G., Porter, D., Sheng, Z., Sibray, S. 2019. Aquifer Depletion, and Potential Impacts on Long-term Irrigated Agricultural Productivity (Issue Paper 63 ed., pp. 20). Ames, Iowa: CAST [Council for Agricultural SciOnline
Hallum, D., Lackey, S. and Sibray, S. 2018 Results of Test-Hole Drilling for Observation Well Planning in the Lower Loup Natural Resources District, Spring 2017; Conservation & Survey Division. pp. 52Online
Hallum, D.R., Sibray, S.S., Howard, L.M., 2018. Hydrogeologic Framework Studies of Portions of the Niobrara River. Conservation and Survey Division, School of Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln . pp. 78Online
Wells, M. J., Gilmore, T., Mittelstet, A., Snow, D., Sibray, S. (2018). Assessing Decadal Trends of a Nitrate-Contaminated Shallow Aquifer in Western Nebraska Using Groundwater Isotopes, Age-Dating, and Monitoring. WATER, 10(8).
Divine, Dana P., Sibray, Steven. 2017. An Overview of Secondary Aquifers in Nebraska. Lincoln, NE: Conservation and Survey Division, UNL. pp. 40Online
Sibray, S.S. and Hallum, D.R.. 2017. Petroleum Pipelines - Facts and Safety. Nebr. Extension. EC3003. 10 pp.Online
Dreeszen, V.H., S. Sibray, and F. Smith. 2002. Scotts Bluff County Test-Hole Logs: Nebraska Water Survey, Test-Hole Report No. 79, 279.
Dreeszen, V.H., Sibray, S.S., Smith, F.A. 2002. Scotts Bluff County Test Hole Logs. Conservation and Survey Division, University of Nebraska. pp. 280.Online
Steele, G., J. Cannia, and S. Sibray 2002. Ground-water quality and age in Pumpkin Creek Valley, western Nebraska. Geological Society of America. 34(6):97 .Online
Harvey, F. E., Sibrary, S. S., 2001 (RS-293). Delineating Ground Water Recharge from Leaking Irrigation Canals Using Water Chemistry and Isotopes. Ground Water 39(3):14.Online
Gosselin, D.C., P.E. Nabelek, Z.E. Peterman, and S. Sibray. 1997. A Reconnaissance Study of Oxygen, Hydrogen and Strontium Isotopes in Geochemically Diverse Lakes, Western Nebraska, USA. Journal of Paleolimnology 17(0):51-65.Online
Sibray, S., and F. Harvey 1997. Determining Recharge Sources and the Impact of Unlined Irrigation Canals in Western Nebraska, Using Stable Isotopes and Major Ion Chemistry and Tritium and Carbon 14 Dating. Geological Society of America. 29(6).
Gosselin, D.C. S. Sibray, J.F. Ayers. 1994. Geochemistry of K-rich Alkaline Lakes, Western Sandhills, Nebraska, USA. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 58(5):1403-1418.



DegreeMajorInstitutionYear Awarded
Bachelor of ScienceGeologyUniversity of Calirfornia-Davis1972
Master of ScienceGeologyUniversity of New Mexico1972




SNR Program Areas

  • Environmental Science

Areas of Interest/Expertise

  • Groundwater geology
  • Drinking water
  • Hydrogeology
  • Irrigation
  • Water development


Currently this page only displays grants that were awarded on 1/1/ 2009 to the present. If a grant was awarded prior to 1/1/ 2009 and is still active, it will not be displayed on this page.

Grant TitleHydrogeologic Framework Studies of Portions of the Niobrara River
Starting Date11/18/2016


Ending Date06/30/2017
Funding Level$22,000.00
Funding AgencyNebraska Department of Natural Resources