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The USGS Washington Water Science Center is one of 28 Water Science Centers in the Water Mission Area of the U.S. Geological Survey. The Water Science Center's mission is to collect, analyze and disseminate the impartial hydrologic data and information needed to wisely manage water resources for the people of the United States and the State of Washington.
To assure that our work is relevant and useful, we form partnerships with Federal, State, and local agencies, Native American governments, and other public organizations.
Funding for the USGS Washington Water Science Center comes from a variety of sources, including direct Federal appropriations, other Federal agencies, and a cooperative program that allows the USGS Washington Water Science Center to match funding with State and local agencies on a dollar-for-dollar basis. Information concerning USGS products and services can be obtained from:
The home page provides direct access to current and historical USGS streamflow data, a bibliography of USGS Washington Water Science Center reports, and much more about USGS operations in the state of Washington.
Basic hydrologic data collection, processing, analysis, dissemination, and archiving are major parts of the USGS Washington Water Science Center program. Streamflow data, for example, are used for flood and water-supply forecasts, planning and design, river regulation, streamflow statistics, and research investigations. Much of the data are available on a near-real-time basis by satellite telemetry. Types of data currently collected include:
USGS data are stored and maintained in long-term, quality-assured data bases. The data bases contain data for Washington and the rest of the nation and are accessible to the public. The data include:
The chief purpose of investigations is to help cooperating agencies solve water problems. For example, investigative results have been used to manage storm-water runoff, to develop ground-water management plans, and to identify areas of water-quality degradation. These investigations address many water issues:
The USGS Washington Water Science Center uses state-of-the-art as well as traditional methods that include quality assurance and quality control:
Samples are collected and analyzed for a wide range of constituents, including major inorganics, nutrients, trace elements, dissolved gases, pesticides, isotopes, organic solvents, petrochemicals, and biological indicators.