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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 wateruse and availability.
Water is one of seven science mission areas of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Water's mission is to collect and disseminate reliable, impartial, and timely information that is needed to understand the Nation's water resources.Read Science Plan
California Water Science Center scientists further research on two native fish species.
The California Water Science Center's Aquatic Ecology Group is making great strides in research and reporting.
Expertise in large river research provides science information to inform decisions on river management and restoration in the Midwest Region. Connectivity is a fundamental concept in river ecology and refers to opportunities for water to flow along and through riverine ecosystems. It is considered one of the primary drivers of river productivity, biological diversity and ecosystem health.
With the ever-increasing rate of utilization of and competition for water (particularly during periods of drought) accurate, current water-use information is of considerable value. This is particularly so in determining future water availability in hydrologically critical areas and for making sound resource-management decisions. For the Oregon Water Science Center, a viable water-use data-...
SPARROW Model Assessments of Nutrients and Suspended Sediment in the Pacific Northwest and California
SPARROW can be used to relate water-quality data to landscape characteristics, such as natural properties and human activities
Proposed new coal export terminals in Washington and Oregon could increase rail traffic through the Northwest and potentially increase unintended release of coal dust to the environment.
The Malheur National Wildlife Refuge provides habitat for a variety of highly valued ecosystem services, including shorebirds, waterfowl, and a diversity of other wildlife species.
USGS research directly helps local public agencies that are responsible for the design and maintenance of the levees that surround the northern Portland metropolitan area with the goal of protecting life and property in the event of flooding from the Columbia and Willamette Rivers that surround the city.
"Determining water availability in the Upper Klamath Basin has always had a degree of uncertainty as a result of the complex hydrology and geology in the region and limited streamflow data."
Evaluating Spring Vulnerability to Climate Change on BLM Priority Management Areas in Southeastern Oregon
USGS total dissolved gas (TDG) data help guide spill and discharge management from dams operated along tributaries of the Willamette River.
The USGS collects, analyzes, and distributes data on a wide variety of water-related issues and resources. Much of our data is publicly available through the National Water Information System (NWIS), but additional datasets and analytical tools are also available.Access NWISWeb
Maximum likelihood logistic regression is used to estimate drought probabilities for selected Virginia rivers and streams. Hydrologic drought streamflow probabilities for summer months are provided as functions of streamflows during the previous winter months. This application allows the display and query of these drought streamflow probabilities for Virginia streams.
Models of the Klamath River from Link River to Keno Dam were constructed and calibrated by the U.S. Geological Survey for calendar years 2006-09.
Suspended-sediment concentration data from National Real-Time Water Quality (NRTWQ) website.
The USGS Flood Inundation Mapping Program has two main functions: 1) partner with local communities to assist with the development and validation of flood inundation map libraries; and 2) provide online access to flood inundation maps along with real-time streamflow data, flood forecasts, and potential loss estimates.
Data from an Analysis of Dissolved Organic Matter in the Upper Klamath River, Lost River, and Klamath Straits Drain, Oregon and California, 2013–16
Goldman, J.H., 2017, Data from an analysis of dissolved organic matter in the Upper Klamath River, Lost River, and Klamath Straits Drain, Oregon and California, 2013–16: U.S. Geological Survey data release,...
The Water-Monitoring-Sites Mapper is an interactive map of Virginia water monitoring-site locations from the USGS National Water Information System (NWIS). It provides access to surface water, groundwater, and water quality monitoring data for active sites. The functionality includes query, select, tabular display by county,...
Downloadable spatial data files for exploration and analysis.
The clickable sites, Water Resources Conditions List, and Data Table at the bottom of the map are all connected. Interacting with any of them will activate pop-ups and display the site in both the Map, List and Table.
This interactive map shows current and cumulative rainfall total for precipitation sites in Virginia. Map provides real-time precipitation radar image to overlay from National Weather Service.
Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDC) threaten the reproductive success and long-term survival of sensitive aquatic populations in the U.S. National Park Service (NPS). The project employs a standardized EDC risk assessment framework to link new and ongoing research efforts in individual Parks and in Park Monitoring Networks, in order to provide a service-wide assessment of EDC risk in the NPS.
River and Coastal Forecast Information
Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center, Slidell, Louisiana—(NWS)
Network wells depicted on the Climate Response Network location map
Note: Color shading in the table below indicates multiple wells that plot as a single point on the state location map above.
Note: BLS = Water Level in Feet Below Land Surface, RVD = Water Level referenced to a vertical datum
Climate model assessment of changes in winter-spring streamflow timing over North America
Over regions where snow-melt runoff substantially contributes to winter-spring streamflows, warming can accelerate snow melt and reduce dry-season streamflows. However, conclusive detection of changes and attribution to anthropogenic forcing is hindered by brevity of observational records, model uncertainty, and uncertainty concerning internal...Kam, Jonghun; Knutson, Thomas R.; Milly, Paul C. D.
Cyclic heliothermal behaviour of the shallow, hypersaline Lake Hayward, Western Australia
Lake Hayward is one of only about 30 hypersaline lakes worldwide that is meromictic and heliothermal and as such behaves as a natural salt gradient solar pond. Lake Hayward acts as a local groundwater sink, resulting in seasonally variable hypersaline lake water with total dissolved solids (TDS) in the upper layer (mixolimnion) ranging between 56 ...Turner, Jeffrey V.; Rosen, Michael R.; Coshell, Lee; Woodbury, Robert J.
The Midwest Stream Quality Assessment—Influences of human activities on streams
Healthy streams and the fish and other organisms that live in them contribute to our quality of life. Extensive modification of the landscape in the Midwestern United States, however, has profoundly affected the condition of streams. Row crops and pavement have replaced grasslands and woodlands, streams have been straightened, and wetlands and...Van Metre, Peter C.; Mahler, Barbara J.; Carlisle, Daren M.; Coles, James F.
On the sensitivity of annual streamflow to air temperature
Although interannual streamflow variability is primarily a result of precipitation variability, temperature also plays a role. The relative weakness of the temperature effect at the annual time scale hinders understanding, but may belie substantial importance on climatic time scales. Here we develop and evaluate a simple theory relating variations...Milly, Paul C.D.; Kam, Jonghun; Dunne, Krista A.
The GFDL global atmosphere and land model AM4.0/LM4.0: 1. Simulation characteristics with prescribed SSTs
In this two‐part paper, a description is provided of a version of the AM4.0/LM4.0 atmosphere/land model that will serve as a base for a new set of climate and Earth system models (CM4 and ESM4) under development at NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). This version, with roughly 100 km horizontal resolution and 33 levels in the...Zhao, M.; Golaz, J.-C.; Held, I. M.; Guo, H.; Balaji, V.; Benson, R.; Chen, J.-H.; Chen, X.; Donner, L. J.; Dunne, J. P.; Dunne, Krista A.; Durachta, J.; Fan, S.-M.; Freidenreich, S. M.; Garner, S. T.; Ginoux, P.; Harris, L. M.; Horowitz, L. W.; Krasting, J. P.; Langenhorst, A. R.; Liang, Z.; Lin, P.; Lin, S.-J.; Malyshev, S. L.; Mason, E.; Milly, Paul C.D.; Ming, Y.; Naik, V.; Paulot, F.; Paynter, D.; Phillipps, P.; Radhakrishnan, A.; Ramaswamy, V.; Robinson, T.; Schwarzkopf, D.; Seman, C. J.; Shevliakova, E.; Shen, Z.; Shin, H.; Silvers, L.; Wilson, J. R.; Winton, M.; Wittenberg, A. T.; Wyman, B.; Xiang, B.
The GFDL global atmosphere and land model AM4.0/LM4.0: 2. Model description, sensitivity studies, and tuning strategies
In Part 2 of this two‐part paper, documentation is provided of key aspects of a version of the AM4.0/LM4.0 atmosphere/land model that will serve as a base for a new set of climate and Earth system models (CM4 and ESM4) under development at NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). The quality of the simulation in AMIP (Atmospheric Model...Zhao, M.; Golaz, J.-C.; Held, I. M.; Guo, H.; Balaji, V.; Benson, R.; Chen, J.-H.; Chen, X.; Donner, L. J.; Dunne, J. P.; Dunne, Krista A.; Durachta, J.; Fan, S.-M.; Freidenreich, S. M.; Garner, S. T.; Ginoux, P.; Harris, L. M.; Horowitz, L. W.; Krasting, J. P.; Langenhorst, A. R.; Liang, Z.; Lin, P.; Lin, S.-J.; Malyshev, S. L.; Mason, E.; Milly, Paul C.D.; Ming, Y.; Naik, V.; Paulot, F.; Paynter, D.; Phillipps, P.; Radhakrishnan, A.; Ramaswamy, V.; Robinson, T.; Schwarzkopf, D.; Seman, C. J.; Shevliakova, E.; Shen, Z.; Shin, H.; Silvers, L.; Wilson, J. R.; Winton, M.; Wittenberg, A. T.; Wyman, B.; Xiang, B.
Data analysis considerations for pesticides determined by National Water Quality Laboratory schedule 2437
In 2013, the U.S. Geological Survey National Water Quality Laboratory (NWQL) made a new method available for the analysis of pesticides in filtered water samples: laboratory schedule 2437. Schedule 2437 is an improvement on previous analytical methods because it determines the concentrations of 225 fungicides, herbicides, insecticides, and...Shoda, Megan E.; Nowell, Lisa H.; Stone, Wesley W.; Sandstrom, Mark W.; Bexfield, Laura M.
Common hydraulic fracturing fluid additives alter the structure and function of anaerobic microbial communities
The development of unconventional oil and gas (UOG) resources results in the production of large volumes of wastewater containing a complex mixture of hydraulic fracturing chemical additives and components from the formation. The release of these wastewaters into the environment poses potential risks that are poorly understood. Microbial...Mumford, Adam C.; Akob, Denise M.; Klinges, J. Grace; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.
The role of frozen soil in groundwater discharge predictions for warming alpine watersheds
Climate warming may alter the quantity and timing of groundwater discharge to streams in high alpine watersheds due to changes in the timing of the duration of seasonal freezing in the subsurface and snowmelt recharge. It is imperative to understand the effects of seasonal freezing and recharge on groundwater discharge to streams in warming alpine...Evans, Sarah G.; Ge, Shemin; Voss, Clifford I.; Molotch, Noah P.
Bioremediation in fractured rock: 1. Modeling to inform design, monitoring, and expectations
Field characterization of a trichloroethene (TCE) source area in fractured mudstones produced a detailed understanding of the geology, contaminant distribution in fractures and the rock matrix, and hydraulic and transport properties. Groundwater flow and chemical transport modeling that synthesized the field characterization information proved...Tiedeman, Claire; Shapiro, Allen M.; Hsieh, Paul A.; Imbrigiotta, Thomas; Goode, Daniel J.; Lacombe, Pierre; DeFlaun, Mary F.; Drew, Scott R.; Johnson, Carole D.; Williams, John H.; Curtis, Gary P.
Bioremediation in fractured rock: 2. Mobilization of chloroethene compounds from the rock matrix
A mass balance is formulated to evaluate the mobilization of chlorinated ethene compounds (CE) from the rock matrix of a fractured mudstone aquifer under pre- and postbioremediation conditions. The analysis relies on a sparse number of monitoring locations and is constrained by a detailed description of the groundwater flow regime. Groundwater...Shapiro, Allen M.; Tiedeman, Claire; Imbrigiotta, Thomas; Goode, Daniel J.; Hsieh, Paul A.; Lacombe, Pierre; DeFlaun, Mary F.; Drew, Scott R.; Curtis, Gary P.
Landscapes from the waves—Marine terraces of California
Many coastlines around the world have stair-step landforms, known as marine terraces. Marine terraces make up a large part of coastal California’s landscape—from San Diego to Crescent City. Find out how these landscapes form, why marine terraces are of interest to scientists, and where you can explore these landscapes.Schulz, Marjorie S.; Lawrence, Corey; Muhs, Daniel; Prentice, Carol S.; Flanagan, Sam
Software and related material (data and documentation) are made available by the USGS to be used in the public interest and the advancement of science.
What’s New: A new version of the SPARROW code is being developed in the R programming language. The advantage of R is that it is non-proprietary and does not require a license or software cost. The R – SPARROW code is now being completed and should be available early in CY18. Stay Tuned.
SELDM is a database application where users can easily create and run highway-runoff simulations. SELDM simulates storm flows, concentrations, and loads. SELDM calculates the risk of exceeding water-quality criteria with and without user-defined BMPs. SELDM calculates annual runoff loads and is able to do a simple annual lake-loading analysis.
CE-QUAL-W2 is a water quality and hydrodynamic model in 2D (longitudinal-vertical) for rivers, estuaries, lakes, reservoirs and river basin systems. W2 models basic eutrophication processes such as temperature-nutrient-algae-dissolved oxygen-organic matter and sediment relationships.
GCLAS is a program designed primarily to compute daily and annual loadings of constituents transported in streamflow.
MODFLOW-USG model of groundwater flow in the Wood River Valley aquifer system in Blaine County, Idaho
Model archive for Wood River Valley groundwater-flow model
The R package wrv is for processing the groundwater-flow model of the Wood River Valley (WRV) aquifer system, south-central Idaho. The groundwater-flow model is described in the associated model report and model archive. Included in the package is MODFLOW-USG version 1.3, a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) computer code that solves the groundwater-flow equation.
In 1977, the Congress of the United States recognized the need for uniform, current, and reliable information on water use and directed the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to establish a National Water-Use Information Program (NWUIP) to complement the Survey's data on the availability and quality of the Nations water resources.
The USGS produces many types of multimedia products. Use the links below to browse our offerings of photograph galleries, podcasts and sound files, videos, aerial photos, and posters related to water. The USGS Newsroom has a Web page that highlights the main collection of multimedia products.
USGS storm-tide sensor bolted to a cement jetty on the Atlantic Ocean coast at Fire Island, New York. USGS scientists deployed over 50 sensors along the coast of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Delaware to study a Nor'easter that affected the Northeast in March of 2018.
Land subsidence in California - Approximate location of maximum subsidence in the United States identified by research efforts of Dr. Joseph F. Poland (pictured). Signs on pole show approximate altitude of land surface in 1925, 1955, and 1977. The site is in the San Joaquin Valley southwest of Mendota, California.
This photo shows the approximate location of maximum...
Hot springs can occur in many parts of the world. The water is hot not due to climate, but rather due to geothermal activity underground, such as volcanic activity or active hydrothermal heating from hot material in the ground. Hot springs result from water heated by underground geothermal activity finding its way to the land surface.
This hot spring is located in the far north on a...
Real-time water-quality, streamflow and water height information for Lake Houston and the surrounding San Jacinto watershed are now available from a new web application from the U.S. Geological Survey, done in cooperation with the City of Houston.
Media and the public are invited to attend a free meeting about South Dakota water issues on Thursday, April 19, in Rapid City, South Dakota.
Bear Lake will house water quality and weather monitoring equipment that will provide near real-time information to the public and water managers beginning in early April and continuing through 2022.
Flooding is the leading cause of Presidential disaster declarations. On average, the water hazard has resulted in more than 80 fatalities and cost the U.S. nearly $8 billion annually.
Data Will Provide a “Snapshot” of the Eastern Snake River Plain Aquifer
Crews from the U.S. Geological Survey have been in the field for weeks measuring flooding in the Midwest and in the Mississippi River watershed, and more recently flooding and storm tides on the Northern Atlantic coast, as higher temperatures, heavy rain, snowmelt and nor’easters affected numerous states.
Instead of requiring costly dredging to remove sediment buildup behind water reservoirs and diversions, sediment from reservoirs in the Missouri River Basin could actually be used as fracking proppant feedstock, also known as frac sand, according to a recently published U.S. Geological Survey study.
The reliability of arsenic testing for drinking water in Minnesota depends on how and when well water samples are collected, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey and the Minnesota Department of Health study, which highlights ways to improve the accuracy of arsenic tests for private wells.
A new water-quality monitoring program, established by the U.S. Geological Survey, can provide scientists and managers with the best available data to help evaluate the health of Great Lakes ecosystems and improve water quality for recreation and commercial fishing.
One week ago, on January 23rd at 12:31 a.m. local time, Alaskans were rocked by a magnitude 7.9 earthquake, with an epicenter in the Gulf of Alaska, about 350 miles southwest of Anchorage, and about 175 miles southeast of Kodiak Island.
Salinity loads that originate from groundwater within the Upper Colorado River Basin have decreased from 1986-2011, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study done in cooperation with the Colorado River Basin Salinity Control Program.