California Water Science Center

Hydrologic Modeling

The USGS has been a leader in the development of hydrologic and geochemical simulation models since the 1960's. USGS models are widely used to predict responses of hydrologic systems to changing stresses, such as increases in precipitation or ground-water pumping rates, as well as to predict the fate and movement of solutes and contaminants in water.

Hydrologic Modeling Software

Hydrologic Modeling Software

USGS models are widely used to predict responses of hydrologic systems to changing stresses, as well as to predict the fate and movement of solutes and contaminants in water.

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California Groundwater Model Archive

California Groundwater Model Archive

Interactive map of California groundwater models, associated publications and resources, and download links.

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Filter Total Items: 59
Date published: September 28, 2020
Status: Completed

Sediment transport, streamflow, and climate change: long-term resilience of the Bay-Delta

Sediment supply is important to the health of the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta and San Francisco Bay (Bay-Delta) ecosystem. Sediment eroded from upland source areas in the Sacramento and San Joaquin watersheds is transported through the rivers to the Bay-Delta where it is deposited in mudflats and tidal wetlands, which in turn helps protect against the effects of sea-level rise. Sediment...

Date published: June 12, 2019
Status: Completed

Basin Characterization Model - Simulating Effects of Iowa Soil Management on Water Availability

As a result of climate change, heavy rainfall, as well as extended dry periods, are becoming more common in the Midwestern United States. These trends are only expected to continue. So, increasing the capacity of soil to store water has become more critical. Storing water increases availability in dry conditions. And the absorption of additional water in wet conditions reduces potential...

Date published: May 16, 2019
Status: Active

San Diego Hydrogeology

This is the first comprehensive geologic and hydrologic study for the San Diego area. This study will provide the integrated hydrogeologic knowledge necessary in this important and highly visible area of the United States and will serve as a role model for similar coastal settings throughout the world that have modest rainfall and small aquifers. Locally, results will help...

Contacts: Wesley Danskin
Date published: April 26, 2019
Status: Active

Regional Groundwater Availability Study of the California Coastal Basins

This study seeks to quantify water availability in the California Coastal Basins (CCBs). The CCBs vary greatly in their geologic, hydrologic, and climatic conditions; predominant water uses (agricultural, urban, or environmental); and how water availability changes in response to natural and anthropogenic stresses. Considering the complex dynamics of the CCBs and the history of managing water...

Date published: February 27, 2019
Status: Active

Salinas and Carmel River Basins Study

Together, the Salinas and Carmel river basins include some of the world’s most fertile agricultural lands and are internationally known for their natural beauty; ecological diversity; multi-national cultural history; and recreation opportunities such as fishing, auto racing, and golfing. The area is oftentimes referred to as the “Salad Bowl of the World” or “America’s Salad Bowl” because of...

Date published: February 27, 2019
Status: Active

Salinas and Carmel Rivers Basin Study: Paso Robles Model Update

The existing Paso Robles Basin Model (PRBM) needed to be updated and enhanced to achieve the timeline and objectives of the Salinas Carmel River Basin Study (SCRBS) for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) and local partners.

Date published: February 27, 2019
Status: Active

SGMApy: An open source platform for computing sustainability metrics and visualizing MODFLOW data

Climate change and demographic changes have underscored the need to improve effectiveness of managing valuable water resources for sustainability. In 2014, the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) established a framework for sustainable, local groundwater management. SGMA requires groundwater-dependent regions to halt overdraft and bring basins into balanced levels of pumping and...

Date published: February 26, 2019
Status: Active

Pajaro Valley Hydrologic Model Update, Data Collection, and Analysis for Sustainability

The Pajaro Valley is home to a billion-dollar agricultural industry, providing food and food processing services for the nation. The water for these enterprises is supplied, in large part, by the groundwater resources (aquifers) in the area. The Pajaro Valley Water Management Agency (PV Water) and the USGS have partnered to improve aquifer monitoring software, allowing better quantification...

Date published: February 4, 2019
Status: Completed

Estimates of soil water deficit during California drought, January 1, 2014: U.S. Geological Survey Data Release

Because the following information has immediate and time-sensitive relevance to public health and welfare owing to the Governor's declared drought emergency it is being released as preliminary information. As preliminary information, it had been reviewed and approved to meet the needs for timely best science, but the methodology is subject to refinement. The information is provided on the...

Contacts: Debra Curry
Date published: February 4, 2019
Status: Completed

Using the Basin Characterization Model (BCM) to Estimate Natural Recharge in Indian Wells Valley, California

Located in the northern Mojave Desert, the Indian Wells Valley has an arid environment, receiving only 4-6 inches of precipitation annually. Like most desert areas, Indian Wells Valley communities rely mostly on groundwater for their available groundwater supply. Increases in urban and agricultural development have resulted in increased groundwater pumpage for public and agricultural use,...

Contacts: Dina Saleh
Date published: February 1, 2019
Status: Completed

Characterization of Hydrologic Conditions for Species Distributions Along Environmental Gradients

Plant distributions at local to global scales are influenced by the interplay among plant traits (physiology, anatomy, morphology), the physical setting, biotic interactions, and historical factors such as disturbances and responses to past climate change. Physiological strategies and functional traits provide a key starting point to understand how distributions are shaped along gradients of...

Date published: January 31, 2019
Status: Completed

Climate and Natural Resources Analysis and Planning for California's Northern Coast

The North Coast Resource Partnership (NCRP) is an innovative, stakeholder-driven collaboration among local government, Tribes, watershed groups, and interested partners in the North Coast region of California. The North Coast comprises seven counties, Tribal lands, major watersheds, and a planning area of 19,390 square miles representing 12% of California's landscape. The NCRP integrates long-...