Dakota Water Science Center

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Our Dakota Water Science Center priority is to continue the important work of the Department of the Interior and the USGS, while also maintaining the health and safety of our employees and community.  Based on guidance from the White House, the CDC, and state and local authorities, we are shifting our operations to a virtual mode and have minimal staffing within our offices.

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Current Dakota Water Conditions

Current Dakota Water Conditions

Explore real-time Dakota streamflow, groundwater, and water-quality conditions and access data with our interactive map.

Current Conditions

Science at DWSC

Science at DWSC

The Dakota Water Science Center collects high-quality hydrologic data and conducts unbiased, scientifically sound research on North and South Dakota's water resources.

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News

Date published: December 10, 2020

Bakken Shale unconventional oil and gas production has not caused widespread hydrocarbon contamination to date in groundwater used for water supply

A new USGS study reports that shale-oil and -gas production from a major production area in Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota has not caused widespread hydrocarbon contamination to date in nearby aquifer zones used for drinking-water supply.

Date published: May 12, 2020

USGS Responds to Spring Flooding

U.S. Geological Survey field crews are measuring flooding across the country as spring weather is in full swing. Warming temperatures, increased precipitation and snowmelt have caused moderate to major flooding in the upper Midwest, East Coast, Central Plains and the Southeast portions of the country.

Date published: April 8, 2019

Public Invitation: Learn the Latest on Your Water Resources in the Dakotas

News media and the public are invited to a free meeting about critical South Dakota-area water issues on Thursday, April 11, in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Publications

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Year Published: 2021

Evaluation of hydrologic simulation models for fields with subsurface drainage to mitigated wetlands in Barnes, Dickey, and Sargent Counties, North Dakota

Proper identification of wetlands, along with a better understanding of the hydrology of mitigated wetlands, is needed to assist with conservation efforts aimed at maintaining the productivity and ecological function (wetland mitigation) of agricultural lands. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture...

Galloway, Joel M.; Tatge, Wyatt S.; Wheeling, Spencer L.
Galloway, J.M., Tatge, W.S., and Wheeling, S.L., 2021, Evaluation of hydrologic simulation models for fields with subsurface drainage to mitigated wetlands in Barnes, Dickey, and Sargent Counties, North Dakota: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2021–5091, 58 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215091.

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Year Published: 2021

Estimates of water use associated with continuous oil and gas development in the Permian Basin, Texas and New Mexico, 2010–19

In 2015, the U.S. Geological Survey started a topical study to quantify water use in areas of continuous oil and gas (COG) development. The first phase of the study was completed in 2019 and analyzed the Williston Basin. The second phase of the study analyzed the Permian Basin using the same techniques and approaches used for the Williston Basin...

Valder, Joshua F.; McShane, Ryan R.; Thamke, Joanna N.; McDowell, Jeremy S.; Ball, Grady P.; Houston, Natalie A.; Galanter, Amy E.
Valder, J.F., McShane, R.R., Thamke, J.N., McDowell, J.S., Ball, G.P., Houston, N.A., and Galanter, A.E., 2021, Estimates of water use associated with continuous oil and gas development in the Permian Basin, Texas and New Mexico, 2010–19: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2021–5090, 27 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215090.

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Year Published: 2021

Groundwater assessment for petroleum hydrocarbon compounds associated with Fuels Area C, Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, 2014–18

In 2013, the U.S. Geological Survey began a study in cooperation with the Defense Logistics Agency and the U.S. Air Force to estimate groundwater-flow direction, install groundwater monitoring wells, and collect soil and groundwater samples for petroleum hydrocarbon compounds to identify the presence of hydrocarbon contamination at Ellsworth Air...

Bender, David A.; Galloway, Joel M.; Medler, Colton J.
Bender, D.A., Galloway, J.M., and Medler, C.J., 2021, Groundwater assessment for petroleum hydrocarbon compounds associated with Fuels Area C, Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, 2014–18: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2021–5060, 37 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215060.