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: February 23, 2015
Status: Active

Application of the SmeltCam to Describe Processes Influencing Delta Smelt Distribution and Movements

The California Water Science Center's "SmeltCam" helps describe processes influencing Delta Smelt distribution and movement.

Date published: January 1, 2015
Status: Active

Understanding Influences on Habitat Quality for Delta Smelt and Other Imperiled Fish Populations

USGS scientists work to provide information needed to evaluate the efficacy of ongoing U.S. Burueau of Reclamation water management efforts in Bay-Delta.

Date published: August 4, 2014
Status: Completed

California Water Use, 2010

In 2010, Californians withdrew an estimated total of 38 billion gallons of water per day, compared with 46 billion gallons per day in 2005.

Contacts: Justin Brandt
Date published: May 24, 2013
Status: Active

Iron Mountain: An Extraordinary and Extreme Environment

At its peak production, Iron Mountain ranked as the tenth largest copper production site in the world, sixth in the U.S. and first in California. During its operation, from 1879 - 1963, ten different mines throughout the site's 4,400 acres were the source of not just copper, but also silver, iron, gold, zinc and pyrite (iron sulfide).

A century of active mining at Iron Mountain took an...

Date published: September 20, 2011
Status: Completed

New Methods to Measure Reservoir Storage Capacity and Sedimentation in Loch Lomond Reservoir

A new method of measuring the storage capacity and sedimentation of Loch Lomond Reservoir, Santa Cruz shows promise to help water managers more effectively assess changes in water-storage capacity in similar basins with steep, narrow drainages in mountainous terrain. The method employs a combination of bathymetric scanning using multibeam-sidescan sonar, and topographic surveying using laser...

Date published: January 1, 2003
Status: Completed

Ecology of Selected Tidal Wetlands of the San Francisco Estuary

Researachers study differences of tidal marsh restoration efforts throughout Bay-Delta ecosystem.

Contacts: Larry Brown