Nationally, we provide information to describe and understand the Earth; minimize loss of life and property from natural disasters; manage water, biological, energy, and mineral resources; and enhance and protect our quality of life. Our goal is to optimize our local capabilities in those technical program areas that are of highest priority to our partners, which are primarily water resources.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) was established by Congress in 1879 to provide the Nation with reliable and impartial information in order to understand the Nation's natural resources. The USGS is unique among Government organizations because we have neither regulatory nor developmental authority--our sole product is impartial, credible, relevant, and timely information, equally accessible and available to all interested parties.
The need for water-resource data and their interpretation has never been greater than it is today. The USGS Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Water Science Center (OKI WSC) has successfully helped many of you—our customers—achieve your goals by providing water quantity and quality information, as well as scientific tools and understanding, when and where they are needed by citizens, businesses, and public officials. We are trying hard to continue that tradition and improve upon it wherever possible.
In 2011, the Indiana and Kentucky Water Science Centers were combined into one "Commonwealth". In 2014, both centers were combined and officially became known as the USGS Indiana- Kentucky Water Science Center (IN-KY WSC). In October 2017, the Ohio Water Science Center was combined with the Indiana-Kentucky center, to form one "integrated" Water Science Center, and became known as the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Water Science Center (OKI WSC). All three centers work together closely, under one Director. The OKI WSC is organized with a Deputy Director in each State office who reports to the Director. Technical and support staff in each State report to the Deputy Director. The combined staff of the center is approximately 160 employees, which is composed of hydrologists, research hydrologists, hydrologic technicians, biologists, geospatial specialists, management, administration, and information technology support personnel. The USGS Ohio State office consists of two locations: Columbus (main office) and New Philadelphia (field office). The USGS Kentucky State office consists of three locations: Louisville (main office), Murray (field office), and Williamsburg (field office). The USGS Indiana State office is located in Indianapolis.
The staff provide the information used in the management, assessment, and vulnerability analyses of water-supply, water quality, flood hazard, drought, and watershed issues associated with Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana's rich water resources. Our activities include (1) maintenance and analysis of long-term quantitative and qualitative data for streams, reservoirs, and ground water; and (2) shorter-term interpretative investigations of specific water-resource issues, such as: ground-water contamination, availability, and protection; pathogen and fecal-indicator contamination and transport in surface water and ground water; analysis of floods and flood potential; and ground-water supply and movement.