South Atlantic Water Science Center (SAWSC)

Water Quality

Our Data Networks:

Real-time water quality:             Georgia |  North Carolina  |  South Carolina
Historical water quality:             Georgia  |  North Carolina  |  South Carolina
Site information:                       Georgia  |  North Carolina  |  South Carolina

Our list of water-quality projects and topics are listed below (view the list of archived projects for Water Quality).


Hint: Use the filter boxes below to fine-tune your search for water-quality science in SAWSC.

Filter Total Items: 41
Date published: September 17, 2021
Status: Active

North Carolina Sustainable Rivers Program

In 2002, The Nature Conservancy and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers launched a collaborative effort to find more sustainable ways to manage river infrastructure to maximize benefits for people and nature. As of 2021, the Sustainable Rivers Program study area includes 40 rivers, 89 reservoirs, and 10,953 downstream river miles. The USGS South Atlantic Water Science Center and USGS Wetland and...

Date published: September 9, 2020
Status: Active

Albemarle-Pamlico Drainage Study Unit

The Albemarle-Pamilco Drainage Study Unit (ALBE) is part of the National Water Quality Program (NWQP, formerly National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA)). NWQP is an ongoing program of the U.S. Geological Survey to provide an understanding of water-quality conditions; whether conditions are...

Date published: March 19, 2020
Status: Active

Monitoring water-quality and geomorphology in the French Broad River during I-26 construction

The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) has partnered with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to assess the water-quality and geomorphologic impacts resulting from the I-26 construction projects in western North Carolina. Streamflow, precipitation, and water-quality monitoring data, coupled with periodic assessments of geomorphology, will support the NCDOT construction-site...

Date published: January 16, 2020
Status: Completed

Water quality characterization of bridge deck runoff in NC

There is evidence that bridge deck runoff has a relatively high loading of a variety of constituents such as nutrients, solids, pesticides, metals, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Information on the quality of bridge deck runoff in North Carolina is, however, lacking. Stormwater permits are designed to reduce nonpoint source loadings of anthropogenically derived constituents to...

Date published: October 30, 2018
Status: Active

SPARROW Modeling for North Carolina Watersheds

In North Carolina, excessive nutrient and sediment loadings have contributed to the degradation of surface-water quality across the state as a result of agricultural activities and population growth increases. To further understand the influences of human activities and natural processes on surface-water quality, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) developed the SPARROW (SPAtially Referenced...

Date published: October 3, 2018
Status: Active

Understanding the Effects of Stormwater Management Practices on Water Quality and Flow

Urban development can have detrimental impacts on streams including altering hydrology, increasing nutrient, sediment, and pollutant loadings, and degrading biological integrity. Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) can be used to mitigate the effects of urban development by retaining large volumes of stormwater runoff and treating runoff to remove pollutants. This project focuses on...

Date published: April 30, 2018
Status: Active

Georgia Statewide Water-quality Monitoring Program

The US Geological Survey (USGS) has cooperated with the State of Georgia to monitor water quality throughout the State since 1937. The current Statewide Water-quality Montoring Program is a network of 50 stations across Georgia operated in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (GAEPD). Over the years, the temporal and spatial...

Date published: January 29, 2018
Status: Active

Groundwater/Surface Water Interaction near Ellerbe Creek, Durham, NC

Falls Lake has been included in the North Carolina Division of Water Quality’s 303(d) list of “impaired” waters, due to violations of the State chlorophyll-a standard caused by excessive nutrient inputs (North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Division of Water Quality, 2010a).  The North Carolina Environmental Management Commission has adopted nutrient management...

Date published: January 25, 2018
Status: Active

Quantifying Floodplain Ecological Processes and Ecosystem Services in the Delaware River Watershed

Floodplain and wetland areas provide critical ecosystem services to local and downstream communities by retaining sediments, nutrients, and floodwaters. The loss of floodplain functionality due to land use conversion and degradation reduces the provisioning of these services. Assessing, quantifying, and valuing floodplain ecosystem services provide a framework to estimate how floodplain...

Date published: December 29, 2017
Status: Active

Chattahoochee River, Georgia BacteriAlert

Background:   How safe is it to swim, wade, and boat in the Chattahoochee River today? For a highly urbanized river such as the Chattahoochee, much of the answer depends on bacteria levels in the water. This website provides "real time" turbidity data, the estimated Escherichia coli (E coli) bacteria count, the most recent E. coli bacteria counts (sample collected each Thursday), and National...

Date published: October 12, 2017
Status: Active

Widespread occurrence and potential for biodegradation of bioactive contaminants in Congaree National Park, South Carolina

Organic contaminants with designed molecular bioactivity, such as pesticides and pharmaceuticals, originate from human and agricultural sources, occur frequently in surface waters, and threaten the structure and function of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Congaree National Park in South Carolina (USA) is a vulnerable park unit due to its location downstream of multiple urban and...

Date published: April 12, 2017
Status: Active

Stream quality assessments in the Southeast

The South Atlantic Water Science Center is a participant in the Southeast Stream Quality Assessment (SESQA) which covers the southeastern region of the Regional Stream Quality Assessment (RSQA).

The goal of the study is to determine how stream...