How do we benefit from USGS streamgages?

Information on the flow of rivers is a vital national asset that safeguards lives, protects property, and ensures adequate water supplies for the future. The USGS is the federal agency responsible for operating a network of about 7,000 streamgages nationwide.

Data from this network are used by water managers, emergency responders, utilities, environmental agencies, universities, consulting firms, and recreation enthusiasts.

A few examples of the many uses for streamgage data include:

  • Planning, designing, operating, and maintaining the Nation’s multipurpose water management systems. 
  • Issuing flood warnings to protect lives and reduce property damage. 
  • Designing highways and bridges. 
  • Mapping floodplains. 
  • Protecting water quality and regulating pollutant discharges. 
  • Managing water rights and transboundary water issues. 

Learn more:

Related Content

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Image: Solar-Powered Streamgage
October 2, 2008

Solar-Powered Streamgage

Solar-powered streamgage in Swiftcurrent Creek at Many Glacier, Montana.

Attribution: Water Resources
Image: Solar-Powered Streamgage
January 1, 2005

Solar-Powered Streamgage

Solar-powered streamgage in Secretary's homeland in Animas River above Tacoma, CO.

Attribution: Water Resources
Image: USGS Streamgage on Cement Creek

USGS Streamgage on Cement Creek

The USGS streamgage on Cement Creek at Silverton, Colorado, measures continuous stream stage and discharge. Cement Creek is part of the Animas River Watershed in southwest Colorado.