Water Resources

Measuring and Monitoring Water

Hydrologic Instrumentation Facility (HIF)

Hydrologic Instrumentation Facility (HIF)

The HIF provides quality hydrologic equipment and instrumentation

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Streamgaging Basics

Streamgaging Basics

The USGS has a nationwide network of over 8,500 sites that measure streamflow and water levels.

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Filter Total Items: 153
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Federal Priority Streamgages (FPS)

Federal Priority Streamgages (FPS) are monitoring stations that track the amount of water in streams and rivers across the Nation and that meet one or more strategic, long-term Federal information needs. FPS are strategically positioned across the Nation to serve, in part, as a “backbone” for the larger USGS streamgaging network that is operated by the USGS in cooperation with over 1,400...

Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

USGS Streamgages By the Numbers

Get the facts and figures about the USGS Streamgaging Network, one of the largest streamgaging enterprises in the world!

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Hydroacoustics

Since the early 1980s the USGS has worked cooperatively with manufacturers to develop and enhance the use of acoustic Doppler instruments for streamflow and other hydraulic measurements. This site provides information on hydroacoustic technology, instruments, and their use.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Nutrients and Eutrophication

Like people, plants need nutrients, but too much of a good thing can be a problem. Nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, occur naturally, but most of the nutrients in our waterways come from human activities and sources—fertilizers, wastewater, automobile exhaust, animal waste. The USGS investigates the source, transport, and fate of nutrients and their impacts on the world around us....

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Urban Land Use and Water Quality

Wherever you live, there’s a creek or stream near you. The eighty percent of Americans who live in metropolitan areas are often unaware of the network of urban creeks—many teeming with life—that weaves through our cities and town. Nowhere are the environmental changes associated with urban development more evident than in urban streams.

Contacts: Barbara Mahler
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Integration of sUAS into Hydrogeophysical Studies: Technology Demonstration and Evaluation

The USGS is evaluating the integration of small unoccupied aircraft systems – sUAS or "drones" –  into USGS hydrogeophysical studies. The following projects are part of a Water Resources Mission Area demonstration and evaluation effort in collaboration with USGS Water Science Centers (WSCs) starting in June 2018.

Contacts: Cian Dawson
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Data Science for Water Resources

Data scientists in the USGS Water Resources Mission Area make sense of large environmental and operational datasets by applying various modeling, statistical, and visualization techniques to generate actionable information.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Hydrologic and Erosion Responses of Burned Watersheds

The enhanced probability of catastrophic wildfires has increased our need to understand the risk of floods, erosion, and debris and contaminant transport in burned watersheds. This project investigates the relation between rainfall intensity and peak discharge; erosion and deposition processes; and water-quality impacts to minimize the loss of life and property resulting from post-wildfire...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Office of the Delaware River Master

In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a Decree in State of New Jersey v. State of New York and City of New York in which the Court established the position of the Delaware River Master.  The Court directed that the River Master perform multiple duties and functions including administering the provisions of the Decree relating to yields, diversions, and releases; conserving the waters of the...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Total Water Use

The USGS has estimated water use for the United States every 5 years since 1950. Estimates are provided for groundwater and surface-water sources, for fresh and saline water quality, and by sector or category of use. Estimates have been made at the State level since 1950, and at the county level since 1985. Water-use estimates by watershed were made from 1950 through 1995, first at the water-...

Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Trends in Water Use

Total withdrawals for all categories of use in 2015 were estimated to be 322 billion gallons per day (Bgal/d), a level of withdrawal not reported since before 1970. Total withdrawals in 2015 were 9 percent less than in 2010, continuing a sharp but steady downward trend since 2005. Freshwater withdrawals were also 9 percent less than in 2015.

Date published: March 3, 2019
Status: Active

Surface-Water Use

Surface-water sources include streams and rivers, lakes and reservoirs, and oceans. For the purposes of the USGS water-use reports, surface water with less than 1,000 milligrams per liter (mg/L) of dissolved solids is considered freshwater, and the remainder is considered saline.

Surface-water resources are often evaluated by watershed. The most recent USGS water-use estimates by...