Virginia and West Virginia Water Science Center

Floods and Droughts

Floods and droughts can have long-term impacts on communities. We map the extent of floods and provide analyses to help manage water resources efficiently. Planning for drought conditions is essential to the sound management of water resources and associated riparian and watershed ecosystems. We use data from active and discontinued stream gages to predict drought streamflow probabilities.

Filter Total Items: 12
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: June 13, 2017
Status: Active

Improving Time of Concentration Estimates for Small Rural Watersheds in the Appalachian Plateaus Physiographic Province, West Virginia

Many culverts and other drainage structures in rural West Virginia are located in small streams or valleys draining 100 acres or less. Design of these structures in West Virginia is generally done using discharge estimates made with widely used and well accepted methods. However, these methods require information including flow-segment length and channel geometry that are poorly characterized...

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: September 30, 2014
Status: Active

Estimating Peak Streamflow Per Square Mile in Virginia’s Urban Basins

Models are presented that describe Virginia urban area annual peak streamflow per square mile based on basin percent urban area and basin drainage area.

Contacts: Samuel H Austin
Date published: September 30, 2014
Status: Active

Low-Flow Characteristics of Virginia Streams

Understanding low flows in Virginia streams is essential to sound management of our water resources and associated riparian and watershed ecosystems. Meaningful characterizations of the magnitude, frequency, and duration of low flows provide valuable insights into the dynamics, variability, and flux associated with water movement through these unique stream systems. Improved estimates of low...

Date published: September 30, 2014
Status: Active

Virginia Flood Investigations

An important part of the Virginia Department of Transportation's missions is the safe maintenance, design, and constructions of bridges that cross-waterways and wetlands in the State. The data collected by USGS in conjunction with this project is a vital element of the overall task and mission of the Virginia Department of Transportation.

Date published: September 30, 2014
Status: Active

Peak-Flow Characteristics of Virginia Streams

Economic growth, and the development, management, and protection of Virginia’s natural resources require anticipating peak stream flows and changes in peak stream flows over time. Extensive hydraulic analysis and smart design are needed to limit the environmental impacts of buildings, pavements, highways, and bridges. Effective design and placement of structures built near streams and on flood...

Contacts: Samuel H Austin
Date published: October 25, 2010

Virginia Chloride Monitoring Network

Objectives of the program are to (1) evaluate the spatial and temporal distribution of chloride concentrations in the aquifers, (2) evaluate the factors that affect the spatial and temporal distributions of chloride, and (3) assess the potential for upconing or lateral intrusion of saline water in the aquifers.

Date published: March 31, 2010

Continuous Water-Quality Monitoring for the Roanoke River Flood Reduction Project

This project:

- Initiates a continuous water-quality monitoring study for the Roanoke River in the area upstream and downstream of the RRFRP project area. 
- Provides a mechanism for detecting short- and long-term changes in Roanoke River suspended sediment water quality during and after the RRFRP implementation.
- Assesses trends in suspended sediment water quality in this...

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 (...