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 2, 2019
Status: Active

Quality Systems Branch (QSB)

The USGS Quality Systems Branch (QSB) represents the Water Mission Area’s commitment to generating environmental data of known quality. QSB produces water and sediment performance-assessment samples and data to provide the USGS laboratory users, USGS laboratories, and field personnel with quantitative performance information to assess data quality.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

USGS Cooperative Matching Funds

USGS Cooperative Matching Funds (CMF) support joint projects with our state, regional, tribal, and local partners to provide reliable, impartial, and timely information needed to understand and manage the Nation's water resources.

Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Streamflow

The USGS National Water Census complements the USGS national network of more than 8,000 streamgages by estimating streamflow for ungaged locations throughout the country, by analyzing streamflow records, and by providing tools for analysis of streamgage data to end users. The USGS National Water Information System (NWIS) makes the actual...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Groundwater

The National Water Census (NWC) is leveraging a long history of groundwater studies and is accelerating ongoing regional studies to assess the Nation's groundwater reserves, studies that formerly were conducted under the USGS Groundwater Resources Program. The NWC is also increasing the ability to integrate groundwater and surface-water analyses into watershed-level assessments of water...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Water Use

Through the National Water Census, USGS will provide more comprehensive reporting of national information on withdrawal, conveyance, consumptive use, and return flow by water-use category. Water-use data enables water managers to plan more strategically and enables the analysis of trends of over time. It is also vital to water-availability studies such as watershed and groundwater models.

Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Environmental Flows

Environmental water studies refer to understanding the quantity, timing, and quality of water flows, as well as the water levels and storage required to sustain freshwater and estuarine ecosystems and the human livelihoods that depend on these ecosystems. The concept of ‘environmental flows’ in stream ecology are the basis of these studies, but they go beyond the understanding of surface flows...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Evapotranspiration

No water budget would be complete without accounting for evaporation and related processes, such as transpiration and sublimation. Evapotranspiration, or "ET," refers to the combined flux of plant transpiration and evaporation from the adjacent soil. It is especially important for understanding water used by irrigated crops, and is related to crop productivity. Consumptive water use for...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

National Water Census: Focus Area Studies

Focus Area Studies are stakeholder-driven assessments of water availability in river basins with known or potential conflict. They contribute toward ongoing assessments of water availability in large watersheds, provide opportunities to test and improve approaches to water availability assessment, and inform and ground truth the National Water Census with local information. Common to each of...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

Agriculture and the Quality of the Nation's Waters

Intensive studies by the USGS National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Project in agricultural areas provide insight into how agricultural activities have altered the natural flow of water and the way that agricultural chemicals enter streams and aquifers, and in particular how nutrients affect algal and invertebrate communities in agricultural streams.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

Chloride, Salinity, and Dissolved Solids

All natural waters contain some dissolved solids (salinity) from contact with soils, rocks, and other natural materials. Too much, though, and dissolved solids can impair water use. Unpleasant taste, high water-treatment costs, mineral accumulation in plumbing, staining, corrosion, and restricted use for irrigation are among the problems associated with elevated concentrations of dissolved...

Contacts: Bruce Lindsey
Date published: March 2, 2019
Status: Active

Large Oil Spills

Oil spills, such as the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, are impactful environmental disasters that have long lasting effects to the landscape, native species, and inhabitants who depend on the area. The USGS explores the adverse effect that large-scale oil spills have on the environment and helps responders prepare for environmental recovery and rehabilitation.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: March 1, 2019
Status: Active

Public Supply Water Use

Public supply refers to water withdrawn by public and private water suppliers that provide water to at least 25 people or have a minimum of 15 connections. Public-supply water is delivered to users for domestic, commercial, and...