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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
Enbridge Energy Partners LLP (Enbridge) reported a 30-inch pipeline ruptured on Monday, July 26, 2010, near Marshall, Michigan. The release, estimated at 819,000 gallons, entered Talmadge Creek and flowed into the Kalamazoo River, a Lake Michigan tributary. Heavy rains caused the river to overtop existing dams and carried oil 30 miles downstream on the Kalamazoo River. As the federal agency in...
The National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) provides an understanding of water-quality conditions; whether conditions are getting better or worse over time; and how natural features and human activities affect those conditions. Regional and national assessments are possible because of a consistent study design and uniform methods of data collection and analysis. Monitoring data are...
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Michigan Bacteriological Research Laboratory (MI-BaRL) conducts research on antibiotic-resistant bacteria and their genes. We have concentrated our studies on antibiotic-resistant bacteria of human-health concern, including vancomycin-resistant enterococci, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (...
Recreational water and industrial discharges are regulated by other federal and state agencies across the country. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Michigan Bacteriological Research Laboratory (MI-BaRL) conducts studies to understand the fate and transport of fecal indicator bacteria in surface and groundwater to aid state and federal partners. A variety of standardized protocols are used to...
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Michigan Bacteriological Research Laboratory (MI-BaRL) conducts ecological studies on the structure and function of eubacterial and archeal communities in the environment. Studies of this type give us basic information about the composition and functionality of different microbial communities and allow us to investigate the effects that natural and...
It is often important to understand the source of fecal indicator bacteria, pathogens, or chemicals that impair the normal use of water. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria and their genes, specific bacterial pathogens (such as E. coli O157:H7 which is primarily associated with cattle), and host-associated bacterial genes (such as human or animal specific Bacteroides genes), can be used to evaluate...
Recently, elevated chlorophyll-a concentrations were found related to persistent algal blooms on Silver Lake in Oceana County, MI. Elevated chlorophyll-a concentrations, high phosphorus concentrations during summer months, as well as a decrease in water clarity indicated potential accelerated eutrophication processes during the last two years, and underscore a need to characterize water and...
The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) was established to accelerate ecosystem restoration in the Great Lakes by confronting the most serious threats to the region, such as nonpoint source pollution, toxic sediments, and invasive species. Three Priority Watersheds have been targeted by the Regional Working Group's Phosphorus Reduction Work Group (Fox/Green Bay, Saginaw, and Maumee) and...
In support of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) Water Chemistry Monitoring Project, the USGS Michigan Water Science Center has been collecting long-term water quality data for Michigan's rivers and streams. Water samples are collected 4 to 12 times a year for selected nutrients, trace metals, sediment, and other water-quality constituents. Intensive sampling (12 samples...
The USGS compiles water use information by State including estimated amounts, sources, and categories of use every five years since 1950. Sources include surface water and groundwater, both fresh and saline. Categories include public supply, domestic, livestock, industrial, irrigation, and thermoelectric power. These data provide a source of information about regional and national trends in...
The USGS, in cooperation with the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, will analyze water sample results from 20 Lansing area wells. The objective of this study is to investigate well characteristics and other factors that may influence the susceptibility of drinking water-supply wells to contamination by contaminants of emerging concern. This information can be used by Lansing and other...
The Mobile River Basin in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee is one of the 59 study units that are part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program. The long-term goals of this program are to describe the status and trends in the quality of a large, representative part of the Nation's surface- and ground-water resources, and to provide a sound,...
Hydrogeologic applications for historical records and images from rock samples collected at the Nevada National Security Site and vicinity, Nye County, Nevada - A supplement to Data Series 297
Rock samples have been collected, analyzed, and interpreted from drilling and mining operations at the Nevada National Security Site for over one-half of a century. Records containing geologic and hydrologic analyses and interpretations have been compiled into a series of databases. Rock samples have been photographed and thin sections scanned....Wood, David B.
Assessment of geochemical and hydrologic conditions near Old Yuma Mine in Saguaro National Park, Arizona, 2014–17
The Old Yuma Mine is an abandoned copper, lead, zinc, silver, and gold mine located within the boundaries of Saguaro National Park, Tucson Mountain District, Arizona. This study analyzed the geochemistry of sediments associated with the Old Yuma Mine and assessed hydrologic and geochemical conditions of groundwater to evaluate the area surrounding...Beisner, Kimberly R.; Gray, Floyd
Collection methods, data compilation, and lessons learned from a study of stream geomorphology associated with riparian cattle grazing along the Fever River, University of Wisconsin- Platteville Pioneer Farm, Wisconsin, 2004–11
Stream geomorphic characteristics were monitored along a 0.8-mile reach of the Fever River in the Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin from 2004 to 2011 where cattle grazed in paddocks along the riverbank at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville’s Pioneer Farm. The study reach encompassed seven paddocks that covered a total of 30 acres on...Peppler, Marie C.; Fitzpatrick, Faith A.
Flooding in the southern Midwestern United States, April–May 2017
Excessive rainfall resulted in flooding on numerous rivers throughout the southern Midwestern United States (southern Midwest) in late April and early May of 2017. The heaviest rainfall, between April 28 and 30, resulted in extensive flooding from eastern Oklahoma to southern Indiana including parts of Missouri, Arkansas, and Illinois.Peak-of-...Heimann, David C.; Holmes, Robert R.; Harris, Thomas E.
Preliminary stage and streamflow data at selected U.S. Geological Survey streamgages in Maine and New Hampshire for the flood of October 30–31, 2017
Rainfall from a storm on October 24–27, 2017, and Tropical Storm Philippe on October 29–30, created conditions that led to flooding across portions of New Hampshire and western Maine. On the basis of streamflow data collected at 30 selected U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) streamgages in the Androscoggin River, Connecticut River, Merrimack River, and...Kiah, Richard G.; Stasulis, Nicholas W.
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.
Continuous water-quality and suspended-sediment transport monitoring in the San Francisco Bay, California, water years 2014–15
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) monitors water quality and suspended-sediment transport in the San Francisco Bay (bay) as part of a multi-agency effort to address management, water supply, and ecological concerns. The San Francisco Bay area is home to millions of people, and the bay teems both with resident and with migratory wildlife, plants,...Buchanan, Paul A.; Downing-Kunz, Maureen; Schoellhamer, David H.; Livsey, Daniel N.
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
Operational tracking of lava lake surface motion at Kīlauea Volcano, Hawai‘i
Surface motion is an important component of lava lake behavior, but previous studies of lake motion have been focused on short time intervals. In this study, we implement the first continuous, real-time operational routine for tracking lava lake surface motion, applying the technique to the persistent lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u Crater at the summit...Patrick, Matthew R.; Orr, Tim R.
Estimates of nitrate loads and yields from groundwater to streams in the Chesapeake Bay watershed based on land use and geology
The water quality of the Chesapeake Bay may be adversely affected by dissolved nitrate carried in groundwater discharge to streams. To estimate the concentrations, loads, and yields of nitrate from groundwater to streams for the Chesapeake Bay watershed, a regression model was developed based on measured nitrate concentrations from 156 small...Terziotti, Silvia; Capel, Paul D.; Tesoriero, Anthony J.; Hopple, Jessica A.; Kronholm, Scott C.
SWToolbox: A surface-water tool-box for statistical analysis of streamflow time series
This report is a user guide for the low-flow analysis methods provided with version 1.0 of the Surface Water Toolbox (SWToolbox) computer program. The software combines functionality from two software programs—U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) SWSTAT and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) DFLOW. Both of these programs have been used primarily...Kiang, Julie E.; Flynn, Kate; Zhai, Tong; Hummel, Paul; Granato, Gregory
Human Bacteroides and total coliforms as indicators of recent combined sewer overflows and rain events in urban creeks
Combined sewer overflows (CSOs) are a known source of human fecal pollution and human pathogens in urban water bodies, which may present a significant public health threat. To monitor human fecal contamination in water, bacterial fecal indicator organisms (FIOs) are traditionally used. However, because FIOs are not specific to human sources and do...McGinnis, Shannon; Spencer, Susan K.; Firnstahl, Aaron; Stokdyk, Joel; Borchardt, Mark A.; McCarthy, David; Murphy, Heather
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 scientist Mackenzie Mullins takes flood measurements at Berry Bayou in Houston, Texas.
USGS scientists Vidal Mendoza and Brian Petri take flood measurements at Fifteenmile Creek near Weser, Texas on August 26. The crew used a power measurement technique, since acoustic measurements will not work due to a large amount of sediment and vegetation in the floodwaters. Photo by Mark Schroeder, USGS.
USGS employee conducts gage inspection at gage 1175500 Swft River MA
USGS “supergages” are very complex. Continuous concentrations of nutrients and streamflow are measured at supergages and the information is available to the public in real-time. A network of supergages are very important in the Mississippi River Basin for assessing the changes in the amount of nutrients that are transported to the hypoxic zone in the Gulf of Mexico. By monitoring and analyzing...
The Arizona Water Science Center details the history and development of the Continuous Slope-Area Method. Learn about the people and events that began these new advances in the field of stream gaging.
Music Artist: Glenn Jones, “Bergen County Farewell”. CC License. Music provided by www.FreeMusicArchive.com
Hydrologic technician Chris Peskuski snapped this picture from Eagle Nest Dam overlooking the Cimarron River where streamflow measurements are made to measure outflow from the dam. Eagle Nest Dam sits at 8,300 feet elevation and is surrounded by two of the highest peaks in New Mexico; Wheeler Peak and Baldy Mountain.
A regional assessment of untreated groundwater in the Coastal Lowlands aquifer system in the southeastern United States is now available from the U.S. Geological Survey.
A regional assessment of untreated groundwater in the Northern Atlantic Coastal Plain aquifer system in the eastern United States is now available from the U.S. Geological Survey.
A regional assessment of untreated groundwater in the Southeastern Coastal Plain aquifer system is now available from the U.S. Geological Survey.
A regional assessment of untreated groundwater in the combined Valley and Ridge and Piedmont and Blue Ridge aquifers in the eastern United States is now available from the U.S. Geological Survey.
Deep drilling in eastern Virginia will evaluate past effects of groundwater pumping, land subsidence, and relative sea-level rise. Future injection of water is expected to add pressure, expand the aquifer, and raise the land surface.
U.S. Geological Survey scientist Dr. Robert Baskin is being awarded with a 2016 Governor’s Medal for Science and Technology. Gov. Gary R. Herbert will present awards to 11 individuals and one company at the 30th anniversary awards dinner tonight.
Water users around the country can now view the past and simulated future of hydrologic processes.
You are invited to join USGS scientists and field technician crews as they collect discharge measurements in rainfall-affected areas.
Helpful new information for anyone designing structures over or near water, managing water distribution, or interested in the flow of local streams.
The U.S. Geological Survey’s California Water Science Center is hosting a media event Wednesday, Jan. 11 at a USGS streamgage location about 7 miles north of Santa Cruz, California. A hydrologist will be available for interviews as field crews collect streamflow data.
Challenges remain in combining data from multiple organizations
The U.S. Geological Survey’s California Water Science Center is hosting a media event Monday, Jan. 9 at a USGS streamgage location below Friant Dam, a streamflow site with significance to the San Juan River Restoration Project.