California Water Science Center

Surface Water

Streams, rivers, lakes and reservoirs - collectively referred to as surface water - are important natural resources for irrigation, public supply, wetlands and wildlife. Surface water is also measured as annual runoff, which is the amount of rain and snowmelt drainage left after the demands of nature, evaporation from land, and transpiration from vegetation have been supplied. It supplies most of our basic water needs.

Filter Total Items: 114
Date published: December 7, 2018
Status: Completed

Pyrethroids

Pyrethroid insecticide use in California has been increasing in recent years. Pyrethroids are used in both agricultural and urban areas. They are of environmental concern because of their high toxicity to fish and invertebrates.

Date published: December 7, 2018
Status: Completed

Sedimentation in the Lower Laguna-Mark West Drainage

The Sonoma County Water Agency (SCWA) and the San Francisco District office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (CORPS) have identified issues associated with sedimentation in the lower Laguna de Santa Rosa and Mark West Creek in Sonoma County. Human activities in the watershed over the last 200 years have accelerated erosion and sediment delivery to the Laguna reducing the water storage...

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Active

Subsidence in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is part of the San Francisco Estuary, home to a diverse flora and fauna, including several threatened and endangered species, has a large area of prime farmland, and serves as the hub of California's freshwater-delivery system that moves water from the wet north to the dry southern part of the State.

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Completed

Methylmercury and Low Dissolved Oxygen Events in Suisun Marsh

The primary purpose of the USGS portion of this proposed study is to evaluate if spectrophotometric and spectrofluorometric methods are useful for identifying organic sources of oxygen demand by analyzing water-quality samples (DO, BOD, Chl, SSC, Salinity, THg, MeHg) collected by other agencies and project participants. Sources to be evaluated include algal production, vegetation, soils, and...

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Completed

Inundation Area '06 New Year's Flood in the Laguna-Mark West Drainage

The Laguna de Santa Rosa, located in Sonoma County, California, flows into Mark West Creek, which drains into the Russian River. The Laguna-Mark West drainage is the largest drainage contributing to the Russian River, encompassing approximately 21% of the total Russian River basin. Runoff from precipitation in headwater areas enters fast-flowing creeks that transport water and sediment...

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Active

Assessment of environmental impacts of mercury treatability test using suction dredging, South Yuba River

The goals of the BLM suction dredging treatability study are to (1) assess the effectiveness of suction dredging in removing mercury from the environment and (2) assess potential impacts of suction dredging with regard to discharging mercury-contaminated suspended sediment to the aquatic environment.

Contacts: Jacob A Fleck
Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Completed

San Gorgonio Pass Artificial Recharge Investigation

San Gorgonio Pass Water Agency (SGPWA) covers an area of 220 square miles in the mountain pass between the Upper Santa Ana River Basin to the west and the Coachella Valley to the east. Since 1961, when the SGPWA was formed, demand for ground water has increased with the increase in population within the agency boundaries. To prepare for future demands for water, the SGPWA has proposed to...

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Completed

Mercury and Dissolved Organic Matter in Delta Wetlands

Between 1860 and 1914, hydraulic mining activities sent more than 800,000,000 cubic yards of mercury-laden sediment into the Delta altering the landscape, water flows, and contributing to the leveeing and reclamation of the Delta's marshes. Transport of mercury from historic mining areas continues today. The sedimentary supply of mercury to the Delta and in Delta sediments (cinnabar,...

Date published: December 4, 2018
Status: Completed

Scoping Study of Los Angeles River-Arroyo Seco Confluence Park

The Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA) is considering plans for developing a new park at the confluence of the Los Angeles River and the Arroyo Seco. These plans include removing channel lining and creating a temporary lake using an inflatable rubber dam. Before implementing the plan, a wide array of scientific and engineering issues must be addressed. The U.S. Geological...

Contacts: Michael T Land
Date published: December 3, 2018
Status: Active

A Non-Point Source Of Contaminants To The Estuarine Food Web: Mobilized Particles From The Intertidal Zone

The San Francisco Bay and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Bay-Delta) region is a highly urbanized and contaminated estuary with a valuable commercial and recreational fishery (Nichlos et al., 1986; SFEI, 2004). Many fish and birds in the San Francisco Estuary exhibit high levels of contaminants (metals and organic pollutants), which have been shown to affect their behavior and reproductive...

Contacts: Jacob A Fleck
Date published: November 28, 2018
Status: Active

Mercury

Mercury is a rare, dense metal, slightly more common than gold in the earth's crust. Mercury occurs in several different forms, the most important of which is methylmercury. Methylmercury is the form most readily incorporated into biological tissues and most toxic to humans. Methylmercury accumulates and biomagnifies in the food chain, reaching highest concentrations in predatory fish such as...

Date published: November 28, 2018
Status: Completed

Assessing the role of winter flooding on baseline greenhouse gas fluxes from corn fields in the Sacramento – San Joaquin Bay Delta

Understanding the magnitude and variability of baseline greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the Sacramento – San Joaquin Bay Delta is critical for current and future land management. For example, strategies that maximize carbon sequestration in soils and plants while minimizing unintended consequences such as GHG emissions are likely to produce both economic and environmental benefits for the...

Contacts: Brian Pellerin