Virginia and West Virginia Water Science Center

Climate Change

We measure, analyze, and evaluate natural and anthropogenic factors that contribute to climate change. Associated land use changes are placing increasing pressure on wildlife resources and require more complicated analyses to identify potential consequences and trade-offs of management alternatives. We work with partners in Virginia and West Virginia to evaluate these changes and predict their impacts on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

Filter Total Items: 10
Date published: May 7, 2018
Status: Active

Monitoring Land-Surface Deformation in the Virginia Coastal Plain

Land-surface deformation in eastern Virginia is being monitored to evaluate effects of groundwater pumping and wastewater injection on land-surface movement and relative sea-level rise.

Date published: October 21, 2017
Status: Active

Modeling summer month hydrological drought probabilities in the United States using antecedent flow conditions

Climate change raises concern that risks of hydrological drought may be increasing. We estimate hydrological drought probabilities for rivers and streams in the United States (U.S.) using maximum likelihood logistic regression (MLLR). Streamflow data from winter months are used to estimate the chance of hydrological drought during summer months. Daily streamflow data collected from 9,144...

Date published: June 24, 2017
Status: Active

Hampton Roads Benchmark Monitoring Network

The southern Chesapeake Bay region is experiencing land subsidence along with rising sea levels, both of which can contribute to coastal flooding. The rates at which these two processes are occurring are not exactly known. Mapping of land elevation change requires ground-truth survey data at multiple locations that are accurate and precise. With the exception of a few CORS sites that have...

Date published: May 12, 2017
Status: Active

Climate Change in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed: Effects on Riverine Discharge, Ecosystems, and Water Quality

The 64,000-square mile watershed that drains to the Chesapeake Bay is highly populated and has diverse land use, including forested, agricultural, and urbanized areas. Increased precipitation in the eastern United States over the last 100 years has affected stream flow and thus the loading of pollutants delivered to the bay. Such pollutants as suspended sediment and dissolved phosphorus and...

Contacts: Karen C Rice
Date published: September 30, 2016
Status: Active

Hydrologic and Water-Quality Factors Affecting Habitat Restoration and Management of the Great Dismal Swamp

The objectives of this study are to identify 1) the relations between water levels in the ditches and groundwater levels near the ditches and in the interior of the Blocks, 2) possible relations between groundwater levels and tree growth rates, and 3) current nutrient chemistry and possible nutrient transport pathways in these wetlands.

Date published: September 30, 2016
Status: Active

Estimating Drought Streamflow Probabilities for Virginia Streams

Planning for drought conditions in Virginia streams is essential to the sound management of water resources and associated riparian and watershed ecosystems. Reliable estimations of the likelihood that stream flows during drought-prone months will exceed specific low-flow thresholds can provide advance warning of drought conditions, allowing extended lead times for improved drought awareness...

Contacts: Samuel H Austin
Date published: August 24, 2010
Status: Active

Virginia Coastal Plain Aquifer Analysis

Groundwater is a heavily used source of water in the Virginia Coastal Plain. Long term and widespread groundwater withdrawals have resulted in regional water-level declines, and created the potential for saltwater intrusion. Sound management of this vital resource relies on continual improvement of the scientific understanding of the aquifer system.

Contacts:
Date published: July 22, 2007

Virginia Coastal Plain GIS Project

The USGS, with cooperation from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission, is involved in several related and on-going regional projects directed at better characterization of this important resource. The large amount of information needed for these projects requires the development and integration of a Geographic Information System (...

Date published: June 22, 2007

River Input Monitoring

The objective of this study is to provide concentrations and estimates of loads and trends of suspended solids, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other selected constituents at the James, Rappahannock, Appomattox, Pamunkey, and Mattaponi Rivers.

Contacts: Douglas L Moyer
Date published: September 30, 2006

The Chesapeke Bay Impact Crater

The International Continental Scientific Drilling Program and the U.S. Geological Survey drilled a 1,766-m-deep test hole near the center of the Chesapeake Bay impact structure in 2005 and 2006. Learn more here:

Contacts: