Mission Areas L2 Landing Page Tabs
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
The USGS is summarizing basic information on water resources for each parish in Louisiana and presenting the information in fact-sheet format. Information presented includes groundwater and surface-water availability, quality, development, use, and trends. These brief summaries of water resources will provide parish officials, local officials and concerned citizens with information needed to...
The live oaks framing Toomer's Corner in Auburn, Alabama were planted about 1880 and have served as a focal point for Auburn celebrations in recent decades. The trees recently received a powerful dose of an herbicide known as Spike 80DF. In an effort to save the trees, a task force made up of university horticulturists, landscapers, agronomists, engineers, chemists and others has undertaken a...
Drinking water for the city of Eugene, Oregon, is drawn from the McKenzie River, a high-quality source that is nonetheless threatened by urban, agricultural, and forestry land uses upstream as well as by changes in water management in the watershed. In 2002, the USGS began monitoring dissolved pesticides in the McKenzie River and its tributaries.
Various environmental groups in Alabama are concerned that the use of culverts at highway crossings to convey stream flows has detrimental effects on the natural conditions of streams. Specifically, some groups are concerned that changes in stream geomorphology, sediment concentrations, and associated turbidity adversely impact the benthic macroinvertebrate community when culverts are...
Assessing the Influence of the Davis Pond Freshwater Diversion on Water-Quality in Waterways and Marshes of Barataria Preserve
In 2002, the Davis Pond Freshwater Diversion began diverting up to 10,000 cfs of Mississippi River water into the waters surrounding the Barataria Preserve of the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. Previously, precipitation, local surface-water runoff, and occasional marine intrusion largely determined quality of surface and marsh porewaters at the Preserve. The new influx of...
Physical soil properties of wetlands, and the hydrology of tidal swamp, tidal creeks, adjacent rivers, and adjacent marshes along the coastal gradient of palustrine, oligohaline, and mesohaline sites in relation to drought, storm, and tidal events
The LaWSC, in collaboration with researchers from the National Wetlands Research Center (NWRC), the NRP program, Auburn University, and Clemson University, is documenting conditions in tidal swamps in Louisiana, Georgia, and South Carolina as a baseline with which to compare future data to assess the impacts of climate change in such areas. Tidal swamps in these states offer an array of...
Water quality monitoring in the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Lake Borgne, and adjacent waterways in southeastern Louisiana, 2009 to 2013
In early 2009, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) constructed a rock barrier across the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet (MRGO), a navigation channel between the Port of New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. In August 2008, prior to construction of the rock barrier, the LaWSC, in cooperation with the USACE, began monitoring specific conductance, dissolved oxygen, and discharge in the MRGO to...
Wetlands in the Bayou aux Carpes area, south of New Orleans, La., currently are isolated from direct inflow of storm water runoff by levees and spoil banks. The USACE is considering removal of a spoil bank that would allow storm-water runoff to flow through and across the wetlands. . The wetlands consist of floating marshes, with a predominately organic substrate, and forested wetlands, some...
Simulation of Groundwater Flow in the "1,500-Foot" and "2,000-Foot" Sands and Movement of Saltwater in the “2000-Foot” Sand of the Baton Rouge Area, Louisiana
Saltwater encroachment has been detected in six aquifers, including the "1,500-foot" and "2,000-foot" sands, north of the Baton Rouge fault in East Baton Rouge Parish. The encroachment is in response to ground-water withdrawals, primarily for public supply and industrial uses, in Baton Rouge. Additional information is needed for water planners and managers in the Baton Rouge area to make...
The Black Warrior - Cahaba Rivers Land Trust and City of Tarrant (as part of the Fivemile Creek Greenway Partnership) are among the new USGS cooperators for 2003 -04. These organizations are spearheading an effort to restore Fivemile Creek in Jefferson County to its place as an important asset in daily lives for those who live and work along the creek in northern Jefferson County. The Greenway...
Water is one of the most important of Alabama's natural resources. Water is not only a vital component of human existence, it is critical to the overall quality of life. In order to protect and preserve this resource for future generations, we must have a baseline of information to make decisions. Decision and policy makers must know the answers to three fundamental questions: where is the...
More surface water than ground water was withdrawn for all categories except aquaculture, mining, and self-supplied residential. During 2005, estimated withdrawals by category and in descending order were: thermoelectric power, 8,274 Mgal/d; public supply, 802 Mgal/d; self-supplied industrial, 550 Mgal/d; irrigation, 161 Mgal/d; aquaculture, 75 Mgal/d; self-supplied residential, 39 Mgal/d;...
Analysis of groundwater response to tidal fluctuations, Operable Unit 2, Area 8, Naval Base Kitsap, Keyport, Washington
Operable Unit 2, Area 8, at Naval Base Kitsap, Keyport is the site of a former chrome-plating facility that released metals (primarily chromium and cadmium), chlorinated volatile organic compounds, and petroleum compounds into the local environment. To ensure long-term protectiveness, as stipulated in the Fourth Five-Year Review for the site,...Opatz, Chad C.; Dinicola, Richard S.
Do downscaled general circulation models reliably simulate historical climatic conditions?
The accuracy of statistically downscaled (SD) general circulation model (GCM) simulations of monthly surface climate for historical conditions (1950–2005) was assessed for the conterminous United States (CONUS). The SD monthly precipitation (PPT) and temperature (TAVE) from 95 GCMs from phases 3 and 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (...Bock, Andrew R.; Hay, Lauren E.; McCabe, Gregory J.; Markstrom, Steven L.; Atkinson, R. Dwight
Surface-water quality in the Lycoming Creek watershed, north-central Pennsylvania, August 1–3, 2011
This report presents the methodology and results for a study of surface-water quality of the Lycoming Creek watershed in north-central Pennsylvania during August 1–3, 2011. The study was done in cooperation with the Williamsport Municipal Water Authority and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Samples of stream water were...Risser, Dennis W.; Conlon, Matthew D.
A method to quantify and value floodplain sediment and nutrient retention ecosystem services
Floodplains provide critical ecosystem services to local and downstream communities by retaining floodwaters, sediments, and nutrients. The dynamic nature of floodplains is such that these areas can both accumulate sediment and nutrients through deposition, and export material downstream through erosion. Therefore, estimating floodplain sediment...Hopkins, Kristina G.; Noe, Gregory; Franco, Fabiano; Pindilli, Emily; Gordon, Stephanie; Metes, Marina J.; Claggett, Peter; Gellis, Allen; Hupp, Cliff R.; Hogan, Dianna
Preliminary synthesis and assessment of environmental flows in the middle Verde River watershed, Arizona
A 3-year study was undertaken to evaluate the suitability of the available modeling tools for characterizing environmental flows in the middle Verde River watershed of central Arizona, describe riparian vegetation throughout the watershed, and estimate sediment mobilization in the river. Existing data on fish and macroinvertebrates were analyzed...Paretti, Nicholas V.; Brasher, Anne M. D.; Pearlstein, Susanna L.; Skow, Dena M.; Gungle, Bruce W.; Garner, Bradley D.
Long-term changes in soil and stream chemistry across an acid deposition gradient in the northeastern United States
Declines in acidic deposition across Europe and North America have led to decreases in surface water acidity and signs of chemical recovery of soils from acidification. To better understand the link between recovery of soils and surface waters, chemical trends in precipitation, soils, and streamwater were investigated in three watersheds...Siemion, Jason; McHale, Michael; Lawrence, Gregory B.; Burns, Douglas A.; Antidormi, Michael
Testing a two-scale focused conservation strategy for reducing phosphorus and sediment loads from agricultural watersheds
This study tested a focused strategy for reducing phosphorus (P) and sediment loads in agricultural streams. The strategy involved selecting small watersheds identified as likely to respond relatively quickly, and then focusing conservation practices on high-contributing fields within those watersheds. Two 5,000 ha (12,360 ac) watersheds in the...Carvin, Rebecca; Good, Laura W.; Fitzpatrick, Faith A.; Diehl, Curt; Songer, Katherine; Meyer, Kimberly J.; Panuska, John C.; Richter, Steve; Whalley, Kyle
Estimates of long-term mean-annual nutrient loads considered for use in SPARROW models of the Midcontinental region of Canada and the United States, 2002 base year
Streamflow and nutrient concentration data needed to compute nitrogen and phosphorus loads were compiled from Federal, State, Provincial, and local agency databases and also from selected university databases. The nitrogen and phosphorus loads are necessary inputs to Spatially Referenced Regressions on Watershed Attributes (SPARROW) models....Saad, David A.; Benoy, Glenn A.; Robertson, Dale M.
Hydraulic, water-quality, and temperature performance of three types of permeable pavement under high sediment loading conditions
Three permeable pavement surfaces - asphalt (PA), concrete (PC), and interlocking pavers (PIP) - were evaluated side-by-side to measure changes to the infiltrative capacity and water quality of stormwater runoff originating from a conventional asphalt parking lot in Madison, Wisconsin. During the 24-month monitoring period (2014-16), all three...Selbig, William R.; Buer, Nicolas
Groundwater-quality data from the eastern Snake River Plain Aquifer, Jerome and Gooding Counties, south-central Idaho, 2017
Groundwater-quality samples and water-level data were collected from 36 wells in the Jerome/Gooding County area of the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer during June 2017. The wells included 30 wells sampled for the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Water-Quality Assessment project, plus an additional 6 wells were selected to increase spatial...Skinner, Kenneth D.
U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2016 annual report
This is the ninth annual report highlighting U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) science and decision-support activities conducted for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI). The activities address specific management needs identified by WLCI partner agencies. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, there were 26 active USGS WLCI science-based projects...Bowen, Zachary H.; Aikens, Ellen; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Eddy-Miller, Cheryl; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Homer, Collin G.; Johnston, Aaron; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Manier, Daniel J.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Walters, Annika W.; Wheeler, Jerrod D.; Wieferich, Daniel; Wilson, Anna B.; Wyckoff, Teal B.; Zeigenfuss, Linda C.
Simulated effects of groundwater withdrawals from the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system and Piney Point aquifer, Maurice and Cohansey River Basins, Cumberland County and vicinity, New Jersey
The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, conducted a study to simulate the effects of withdrawals from the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system on streamflow and groundwater flow and from the Piney Point aquifer on water levels in the Cohansey and Maurice River Basins in Cumberland County...Gordon, Alison D.; Buxton, Debra E.
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.
Borehole nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is an emerging geophysical method being applied to hydrogeology investigations. NMR is a quantitative geophysical method that can be used to make in situ assessments of porosity, water content, mobile and immobile water fraction, and estimates of permeability. While borehole NMR is commonly used in the oil and gas industry, it is...
Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and Idaho Power Company collected water, sediment, and biological samples from Brownlee Reservoir as part of an ongoing, cooperative study of mercury cycling in the Hells Canyon complex of reservoirs along the Snake River bordering Idaho and Oregon. The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality is also a partner in the study....
On September 19th, 2017 staff from the USGS NM WSC Albuquerque and Las Cruces offices visited a Climate Response Network (CRN) well just on the east side of the Organ Mountains outside of Las Cruces to receive training on integrity testing groundwater wells. What is integrity testing? Integrity testing involves adding a slug of clean water to a well and measuring how fast...
The Maine Office boat, "Miss Q", is parked next to the boat launch on Verona Island, ready to begin data collection on the Penobscot River. The crew was preparing to collect ADCP data (depth and velocity) as well as conductivity, temperature and depth profiles at various locations. In the background is the Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Fort Knox.
Along the northeast coast of Puerto Rico, USGS hydrologic technician Francisco Almanzar surveys reference elevation points to ensure the accuracy of water level data. Almanzar and other USGS employees installed nine storm surge sensors along the coast on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 4, 2017 as Hurricane Irma approached.
Hurricane Harvey made landfall on August 25th. Over the next few days, record rain totals had devastated the area.
At the USGS EROS Center, we study land change, operate the Landsat satellites, and maintain the longest, continuously acquired collection of images of the Earth's land surface.
USGS scientists Lisa Ashmore and Lee Bodkin collect water-quality samples on Lake Houston in response to the high flow conditions that resulted from Harvey.
Scientists to test the Great Salt Lake and Utah Lake
To gain insights into the risks associated with uranium mining and processing, U.S. Geological Survey scientists are investigating how uranium moves into and up food chains.
Forty years ago on July 31, as Coloradoans and tourists celebrated the state’s centennial, between 12 and 14 inches of rain fell over a four-hour period in the mountains below the resort town of Estes Park, killing 143 people. The 1976 Big Thompson flood stands as the worst natural disaster in Colorado’s recorded history.
Assessing age of groundwater to determine resource availability
Over the last 30 years in the United States, how many people have died—on average—per year from floods?
Study shows water quality minimally affected in nearby streams and groundwater
Sources of Excessive Nutrients in the Transboundary Red-Assiniboine River Basin Identified by Binational Research Team
An analysis of more than 20,000 wells nationwide shows 25 states have groundwater that has either high or very high potential to be corrosive...