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Pennsylvania Water Science Center

We work in cooperation with numerous federal, state, and local agencies to collect scientific data and conduct scientific studies of the source, quantity, quality, ecology, and use of Pennsylvania's water resources.

News

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Testing New Water Quality Observation Methods In Philadelphia

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Franklin County Moved to, and Clinton and York Counties Remain at Drought Warning

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Pennsylvania Waters - Fall 2023 - Issue 11

Publications

Legacy sediment as a potential source of orthophosphate: Preliminary conceptual and geochemical models for the Susquehanna River, Chesapeake Bay watershed, USA

Nutrient pollution from agriculture and urban areas plus acid mine drainage (AMD) from legacy coal mines are primary causes of water-quality impairment in the Susquehanna River, which is the predominant source of freshwater and nutrients entering the Chesapeake Bay. Recent increases in the delivery of dissolved orthophosphate (PO4) from the river to the bay may be linked to long-term increases in

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Charles A. Cravotta, Travis L. Tasker, Peter M. Smyntek, Joel Blomquist, John Clune, Qian Zhang, Noah Schmadel, Natalie Katrina Schmer

Your land, your water—Using research to guide conservation practices on local farms in the Chesapeake Bay watershed

Agricultural lands are an important part of the economy and heritage of the Chesapeake Bay watershed and are a focus of conservation activities. Streams and rivers around farms provide communities with drinking water and recreational opportunities, but these local benefits can be impaired by elevated nutrient and sediment concentrations. Compared to inputs from the atmosphere, wastewater, and urba
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James S. Webber, John W. Clune, Alex M. Soroka, Kenneth E. Hyer

Determination and prediction of micro scale rare earth element geochemical associations in mine drainage treatment wastes

Acid mine drainage (AMD) has been proposed as a novel source of rare earth elements (REE), a group of elements that includes critical metals for clean energy and modern technologies. REE are sequestered in the Fe–Al–Mn-rich precipitates produced during the treatment of AMD. These AMD solids are typically managed as waste but could be a REE source. Here, results from AMD solids characterization and
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Benjamin C. Hedin, Mengling Y. Stuckman, Charles A. Cravotta, Christina L. Lopano, Rosemary C. Capo

Science

Groundwater Recharge - Pennsylvania

New baseflow and recharge estimates were published in a USGS data release in 2023 (see 'Data' tab). Recharge is the process of adding water to the saturated zone. Because it is almost impossible to measure directly, recharge is usually estimated by indirect means. Completed USGS studies provide estimates of groundwater recharge in Pennsylvania and methods for estimating recharge in humid regions.
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Groundwater Recharge - Pennsylvania

New baseflow and recharge estimates were published in a USGS data release in 2023 (see 'Data' tab). Recharge is the process of adding water to the saturated zone. Because it is almost impossible to measure directly, recharge is usually estimated by indirect means. Completed USGS studies provide estimates of groundwater recharge in Pennsylvania and methods for estimating recharge in humid regions.
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Hydrologic and Water Quality Studies of PFAS in Pennsylvania

USGS is working with federal, state, and local partners to monitor and evaluate perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in Pennsylvania's groundwater and surface waters. A recent study sampled tap water in Pennsylvania (and other states) and detected PFAS chemicals in some samples.
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Hydrologic and Water Quality Studies of PFAS in Pennsylvania

USGS is working with federal, state, and local partners to monitor and evaluate perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in Pennsylvania's groundwater and surface waters. A recent study sampled tap water in Pennsylvania (and other states) and detected PFAS chemicals in some samples.
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Contaminants in Groundwater near Superfund sites in Pennsylvania

USGS has investigated groundwater flow and contaminant transport in the vicinity of Superfund and other hazardous-waste sites in Pennsylvania, in cooperation with EPA. Additional cooperative support has been provided by the U.S. Department of Defense, National Park Service, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, and Montgomery Counties, and local...
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Contaminants in Groundwater near Superfund sites in Pennsylvania

USGS has investigated groundwater flow and contaminant transport in the vicinity of Superfund and other hazardous-waste sites in Pennsylvania, in cooperation with EPA. Additional cooperative support has been provided by the U.S. Department of Defense, National Park Service, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, and Montgomery Counties, and local...
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