Mission Areas

Water Resources

Water information is fundamental to national and local economic well-being, protection of life and property, and effective management of the Nation’s water resources. The USGS works with partners to monitor, assess, conduct targeted research, and deliver information on a wide range of water resources and conditions including streamflow, groundwater, water quality, and water use and availability.

USGS Water Data for the Nation

USGS Water Data for the Nation

Surface-water, groundwater, water-quality, and water-use data collected at approximately 1.9 million sites across all 50 states.

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Message from the Associate Director for Water

Message from the Associate Director for Water

Learn more about the WMA from Dr. Don Cline, the Associate Director for Water Resources.


Popular Water Data and Tools

Explore our science by the topical areas that drive the research and projects conducted by our Programs.

USGS Water Data for the Nation

Water Quality Portal

National Groundwater Monitoring Network Data Portal


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Date published: April 11, 2019

Salinity Cycles in Lower Colorado River Caused by Precipitation Patterns in Upper Basin

A new study shows that mysterious cycles in salinity in the lower Colorado River are a result of precipitation patterns in the headwaters of the upper basin more than a thousand river miles away. The salinity levels generally repeat about every 10 years.

Date published: April 8, 2019

Public Invitation: Learn the Latest on Your Water Resources in the Dakotas

News media and the public are invited to a free meeting about critical South Dakota-area water issues on Thursday, April 11, in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Date published: April 5, 2019

Media Advisory: USGS Crews Measure Record Flooding in Fargo

Reporters: Do you want to interview USGS scientists as they measure flooding in and near Fargo, North Dakota? Please contact Dave Ozman, Marisa Lubeck or Chris Laveau.


Year Published: 2019

Drought Forecasting for Streams and Groundwaters in Northeastern United States

BackgroundWhen rainfall is lower than normal over an extended period, streamflows decline, groundwater levels fall, and hydrological drought can occur. Droughts can reduce the water available for societal needs, such as public and private drinking-water supplies, farming, and industry, and for ecological health, such as maintenance of water...

Austin, Samuel H.; Dudley, Robert W.
Austin, S.H., and Dudley, R.W., 2019, Drought forecasting for streams and groundwaters in northeastern United States: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2019–3015, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20193015.

Year Published: 2019

Water-level data for the Albuquerque Basin and adjacent areas, central New Mexico, period of record through September 30, 2017

The Albuquerque Basin, located in central New Mexico, is about 100 miles long and 25–40 miles wide. The basin is hydrologically defined as the extent of consolidated and unconsolidated deposits of Tertiary and Quaternary age that encompasses the structural Rio Grande Rift between San Acacia to the south and Cochiti Lake to the north. A 20-percent...

Beman, Joseph E.; Ritchie, Andre B.; Galanter, Amy E.
Beman, J.E., Ritchie, A.B., and Galanter, A.E., 2019, Water-level data for the Albuquerque Basin and adjacent areas, central New Mexico, period of record through September 30, 2017: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1113, 39 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ds1113.

Year Published: 2019

Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Best Management Practice Implementation in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, 1985–2014

Efforts to restore water quality in Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries often include extensive Best Management Practice (BMP) implementation on agricultural and developed lands. These BMPs include a variety of methods to reduce nutrient and sediment loads, such as cover crops, conservation tillage, urban filtering systems, and other practices....

Sekellick, Andrew J.; Devereux, Olivia H.; Keisman, Jennifer L.D.; Sweeney, Jeffrey S.; Blomquist, Joel D.
Sekellick, A.J., Devereux, O.H., Keisman, J.L.D., Sweeney, J.S., and Blomquist, J.D., 2019, Spatial and temporal patterns of Best Management Practice implementation in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, 1985–2014: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5171, 25 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185171.