Blasch is New Director of USGS Idaho Water Science Center

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Dr. Kyle W. Blasch begins work today as the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Idaho Water Science Center, headquartered in Boise.

BOISE, Idaho — Dr. Kyle W. Blasch begins work today as the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Idaho Water Science Center, headquartered in Boise.

Image: USGS Idaho Water Science Director Dr. Kyle Blasch
Dr. Kyle W. Blasch assumes his duties as Director of the U.S. Geological Survey Idaho Water Science Center June 15, 2015.Public domain

He previously served as Assistant Director of the USGS Wyoming-Montana Water Science Center. He takes over in Idaho from acting director Greg Clark. Clark will retain his duties as Associate Director for Scientific Investigations.

Blasch says his first priority is reaching out to leaders of Idaho’s water resources community to learn more about the state’s water issues and how the USGS can continue to support science-based decision making. He also hopes to take a regional approach to water resources issues.

“Idaho faces many of the same challenges as Montana and Wyoming,” said Blasch. “Water crosses state lines, and so do many of the issues around water such as drought and water availability for agriculture and energy production. Successfully addressing these issues requires regional collaboration.”

USGS Northwest Regional Director Richard Ferrero agreed, saying, “I look forward to engaging with Kyle and our partner agencies on the many water-related challenges facing the region.”

Blasch graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994 with an undergraduate degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering and a Master of Science degree in Meteorology. He was commissioned that year as a U.S. Air Force officer, serving as an active-duty bioenvironmental engineer until 1998. He later joined the U.S. Air Force Reserve and continues to serve.

He joined the USGS in 2000 while completing his doctoral degree in hydrology at the University of Arizona. As a research hydrologist with the USGS Arizona Water Science Center, he led studies of groundwater recharge and modeling. In 2008, he moved to the USGS Wyoming-Montana Water Science Center where he directed field studies and technical assessments of energy-related development, dam removal, water-use and water-quality policies, and other issues.

The USGS Idaho Water Science Center provides reliable, impartial scientific information about surface and ground water, water quality, and water use to citizens and to local, state, tribal and federal partners. In addition to the Boise headquarters, the center has field offices in Boise, Post Falls, and Idaho Falls, as well as a project office at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory in Idaho Falls.