Water Resources


The USGS Water Resources Mission Area is authorized by Congress through four budget programs, by key initiatives and cooperative activities are funded. Congressional appropriations support USGS, with partners, to monitor, assess, conduct targeted research, and deliver information on a wide range of water resources.

Groundwater and Streamflow Information Program

The Groundwater and Streamflow Information Program (GWSIP) serves as the national source of impartial, timely, rigorous, and relevant data for short- and long-term water decisions by stakeholders across the United States. In 2018, the USGS began piloting the Nation’s Next Generation Water Observing System (NGWOS) that will provide high-fidelity, real-time data on water quantity and quality.

National Water Quality Program

The National Water Quality Program provides an understanding of water-quality conditions; whether conditions are getting better or worse over time; and how natural features and human activities affect those conditions.

Water Availability and Use Science Program

 The Water Availability and Use Science Program (WAUSP) assists in the determination of water that is available for human and ecological uses, now and in the future. This includes evaluating the quantity and quality of water, identifying long-term trends in water availability, and developing an improved ability to forecast water availability for economic, energy production, and environmental uses.

Water Resources Research Act Program

The Water Resources Research Act Program is a Federal-State partnership that plans, facilitates, and conducts research that helps resolve State and regional water problems; promotes technology transfer; promotes dissemination and application of research; trains scientists through participation in research; and awards competitive grants under the Water Resources Research Act.