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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
1 June 2010
Hurricane season starts today, and the USGS Lower Mississippi Gulf Water Science Center is committed to collecting and providing the most up-to-date information before, during, and after the storms that are sure to come our way. When a hurricane or tropical storm is approaching, accurate and timely storm data are crucial in making good decisions regarding personal safety and...
USGS Information and Links
Hurricane Hazards—A National Threat (fact sheet)
USGS Natural Hazards - Hurricanes
Hurricane Forecast Information
National Hurricane Center—(NWS)
Current Tropical Forecast Information
GOES-8 Atlantic Infrared Imagery
GOES-8 Atlantic Visible Imagery
Earth Scan Laboratory—(LSU)
GOES-8 Atlantic Infrared...
USGS Louisiana Coastal Sites
Hurricane season starts today, and the USGS Lower Mississippi Gulf Water Science Center is committed to collecting and providing the most up-to-date information before, during, and after the storms that are sure to come our way. When a hurricane or tropical storm is approaching, accurate and timely storm data is crucial in making good decisions regarding...
River and Coastal Forecasts
The USGS is not a forecasting agency, but the National Weather Service (NWS) is, and they make extensive use of the data we collect in their effort to provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date forecasts of many Louisiana rivers and streams, and weather along the coast. The links below will provide you with direct access to the NWS forecasts for...
In the mid-1990s, a new technology emerged in the field of inland streamflow monitoring. The South Atlantic Water Science Center is making great use of the acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP). It was originally developed for oceanographic work, but was adapted for inland streamflow measurements. This instrument is transforming the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) streamgaging program.
We partner with the EPA to conduct long-term water-quality and streamflow monitoring and streamflow measurements in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin, which has been widely impacted by historic mining activities. We collect water-quality samples 2-4 times per year at 20 sites throughout the basin. Our scientists analyze these samples for metals, hardness, sediment, and...
Hills Creek, Lookout Point, and Dexter Dams are located on the Middle Fork Willamette River upstream of Eugene in western Oregon, and are important resources managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for flood control, hydroelectric power, recreation, navigation, and irrigation. On the South Santiam River east of Albany in western Oregon, Green Peter and Foster Dams provide functions...
Groundwater-level monitoring in the upper Deschutes Basin of central Oregon from 1997 to 2008 shows water-level declines in some places that are larger than might be expected from climate variations alone, raising questions regarding the influence of groundwater pumping, canal lining (which decreases recharge), and other human influences. Between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s, water levels in...
Henry Hagg Lake is a reservoir located in the foothills of the eastern slope of the Coast Range Mountains of northwestern Oregon. The lake was formed by Scoggins Dam, an earthfill structure that impounds Scoggins Creek, a tributary of the Tualatin River. Hagg Lake was filled and began normal operation in 1975. At a maximum water elevation of 93.2 meters (305.8 feet) above sea level, the lake's...
The Klamath River from Link River to Keno Dam experiences poor water-quality conditions on a seasonal basis, creating inhospitable conditions for fish and other aquatic organisms. The Link River, the Klamath Straits Drain, and the Klamath River at Keno all were classified as having "very poor" water quality in summer by the Oregon Water Quality Index. The Klamath River in this reach also was...
Beavers and their dams are common sights along creeks in Washington County, Oregon. Beaver help create diverse habitats for many other animals, including birds, fish, and insects. The USGS studys the affect beavers and their dams have on the amount and quality of water in local streams, providing a greater insight into what benefits or issues beavers may have to an urban environment.
A key component to assessing the contaminant exposure pathways in streams and rivers of the Chesapeake Bay is using GIS-based landscape analysis to identify sources of endocrine disrupting chemicals. Municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) discharges are potentially major sources of EDCs to streams, and therefore understanding the de facto wastewater reuse (represented as...
Recovery data for surface water, groundwater and lab reagent samples analyzed by the USGS National Water Quality Laboratory schedule 2437, water years 2013-15
Analytical recovery is the concentration of an analyte measured in a water-quality sample expressed as a percentage of the known concentration added to the sample (Mueller and others, 2015). Analytical recovery (hereafter referred to as “recovery”) can be used to understand method bias and variability and to assess the temporal changes in a method...Shoda, Megan E.; Nowell, Lisa H.; Bexfield, Laura M.; Sandstrom, Mark W.; Stone, Wesley W.
Storage filters upland suspended sediment signals delivered from watersheds
Climate change, tectonics, and humans create long- and short-term temporal variations in the supply of suspended sediment to rivers. These signals, generated in upland erosional areas, are filtered by alluvial storage before reaching the basin outlet. We quantified this filter using a random walk model driven by sediment budget data, a power-law...Pizzuto, James E.; Keeler, Jeremy; Skalak, Katherine; Karwan, Diana
Hourly storm characteristics along the U.S. West Coast: Role of atmospheric rivers in extreme precipitation
Gridded hourly precipitation observations over the conterminous U.S., from 1948 to 2002, are analyzed to determine climatological characteristics of storm precipitation totals. Despite generally lower hourly intensities, precipitation totals along the U.S. West Coast (USWC) are comparable to those in southeast U.S. (SEUS). Storm durations, more so...Lamjiri, Maryam A.; Dettinger, Michael; Ralph, F. Martin; Guan, B.
Complex networks of functional connectivity in a wetland reconnected to its floodplain
Disturbances such as fire or flood, in addition to changing the local magnitude of ecological, hydrological, or biogeochemical processes, can also change their functional connectivity—how those processes interact in space. Complex networks offer promise for quantifying functional connectivity in watersheds. The approach resolves connections...Larsen, Laurel G.; Newman, Susan; Saunders, Colin; Harvey, Judson
Fine particle retention within stream storage areas at base flow and in response to a storm event
Fine particles (1–100 µm), including particulate organic carbon (POC) and fine sediment, influence stream ecological functioning because they may contain or have a high affinity to sorb nitrogen and phosphorus. These particles are immobilized within stream storage areas, especially hyporheic sediments and benthic biofilms. However, fine particles...Drummond, J. D.; Larsen, L. G.; González-Pinzón, R.; Packman, A. I.; Harvey, Judson
Plant diversity increases with the strength of negative density dependence at the global scale
Theory predicts that higher biodiversity in the tropics is maintained by specialized interactions among plants and their natural enemies that result in conspecific negative density dependence (CNDD). By using more than 3000 species and nearly 2.4 million trees across 24 forest plots worldwide, we show that global patterns in tree species diversity...LaManna, Joseph A.; Mangan, Scott A.; Alonso, Alfonso; Bourg, Norman; Brockelman, Warren Y.; Bunyavejchewin, Sarayudh; Chang, Li-Wan; Chiang, Jyh-Min; Chuyong, George B.; Clay, Keith; Condit, Richard; Cordell, Susan; Davies, Stuart J.; Furniss, Tucker J.; Giardina, Christian P.; Gunatilleke, I.A.U. Nimal; Gunatilleke, C.V. Savitri; He, Fangliang; Howe, Robert W.; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Hsieh, Chang-Fu; Inman-Narahari, Faith M.; Janik, David; Johnson, Daniel J.; Kenfack, David; Korte, Lisa; Kral, Kamil; Larson, Andrew J.; Lutz, James A.; McMahon, Sean M.; McShea, William J.; Memiaghe, Herve R.; Nathalang, Anuttara; Novotny, Vojtech; Ong, Perry S.; Orwig, David A.; Ostertag, Rebecca; Parker, Geoffrey G.; Phillips, Richard P.; Sack, Lawren; Sun, I-Fang; Tello, J. Sebastian; Thomas, Duncan W.; Turner, Benjamin L.; Vela Diaz, Dilys M.; Vrska, Tomas; Weiblen, George D.; Wolf, Amy; Yap, Sandra; Myers, Jonathan A.
Response of deep groundwater to land use change in desert basins of the Trans-Pecos region, Texas, USA: Effects on infiltration, recharge, and nitrogen fluxes
Quantifying the effects of anthropogenic processes on groundwater in arid regions can be complicated by thick unsaturated zones with long transit times. Human activities can alter water and nutrient fluxes, but their impact on groundwater is not always clear. This study of basins in the Trans-Pecos region of Texas links anthropogenic land use and...Robertson, Wendy Marie; Böhlke, John Karl; Sharp, John M.
Tracking the fate of nitrate through pulse-flow wetlands: A mesocosm scale 15N enrichment tracer study
Quantitative information about the fate of applied nitrate (NO3-N) in pulse-flow constructed wetlands is essential for designing wetland treatment systems and assessing their nitrogen removal services for agricultural and stormwater applications. Although many studies have documented NO3-N losses in wetlands, controlled experiments indicating the...Messer, Tiffany L.; Burchell, Michael R.; Böhlke, John Karl; Tobias, Craig R.
On the probability distribution of daily streamflow in the United States
Daily streamflows are often represented by flow duration curves (FDCs), which illustrate the frequency with which flows are equaled or exceeded. FDCs have had broad applications across both operational and research hydrology for decades; however, modeling FDCs has proven elusive. Daily streamflow is a complex time series with flow values ranging...Blum, Annalise G.; Archfield, Stacey A.; Vogel, Richard M.
A hybrid machine learning model to predict and visualize nitrate concentration throughout the Central Valley aquifer, California, USA
Intense demand for water in the Central Valley of California and related increases in groundwater nitrate concentration threaten the sustainability of the groundwater resource. To assess contamination risk in the region, we developed a hybrid, non-linear, machine learning model within a statistical learning framework to predict nitrate...Ransom, Katherine M.; Nolan, Bernard T.; Traum, Jonathan A.; Faunt, Claudia; Bell, Andrew M.; Gronberg, Jo Ann M.; Wheeler, David C.; Zamora, Celia; Jurgens, Bryant; Schwarz, Gregory E.; Belitz, Kenneth; Eberts, Sandra; Kourakos, George; Harter, Thomas
Groundwater resources of the Devils Postpile National Monument—Current conditions and future vulnerabilities
This study presents an extensive database on groundwater conditions in and around Devils Postpile National Monument. The database contains chemical analyses of springs and the monument water-supply well, including major-ion chemistry, trace element chemistry, and the first information on a list of organic compounds known as emerging contaminants....Evans, William C.; Bergfeld, Deborah
Archaeal diversity and CO2 fixers in carbonate-/siliciclastic-rock groundwater ecosystems
Groundwater environments provide habitats for diverse microbial communities, and although Archaea usually represent a minor fraction of communities, they are involved in key biogeochemical cycles. We analysed the archaeal diversity within a mixed carbonate-rock/siliciclastic-rock aquifer system, vertically from surface soils to subsurface...Lazar, Cassandre Sara; Stoll, Wenke; Lehmann, Robert; Herrmann, Martina; Schwab, Valérie F.; Akob, Denise M.; Nawaz, Ali; Wubet, Tesfaye; Buscot, François; Totsche, Kai-Uwe; Küsel, Kirsten
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.
Gary Moore spent the last three days of 2015 stacking hefty bags of sand in front of a fellow church member’s brick home. With only 1,000 feet between the house and the swelling Mississippi and Meramec Rivers, Moore and other volunteers worked quickly, in frigid temperatures, to assemble a 10-foot high, 1,000-foot-long sandbag wall to ward off floodwaters.
Despite two centuries of scientific study, basic questions persist about geysers—why do they exist? What determines their behavior?
A report published today by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Connecticut Department of Public Health, reveals that water from some private wells across the state has registered high levels of Arsenic and Uranium.
Reporters: Do you want to interview USGS scientists as they measure flooding? Please contact Jennifer LaVista.
Starting on May 2 and lasting for about two days, a helicopter towing a large, cylindrical sensor will make low-level flights over parts of Cedar Rapids as part of a groundwater survey.
USGS model simulations suggest that Walker Lake will rise by as much as 15 to 18 feet this year, the most in a single year in recorded history.
While freshwater ecosystems cover only a small amount of the land surface in Alaska, they transport and emit a significant amount of carbon, according to new U.S. Geological Survey research. An invited feature article for Ecological Applications provides the first-ever major aquatic carbon flux assessment for the entire state. Carbon flux refers to the rate of carbon transfer between pools.
The new “Water On-the-Go” mobile app gives the public easy access to current conditions in streams across Texas. This product was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey to help raise water awareness during both floods and normal conditions.
Both irrigation wells and municipal wells affect flows in the Little Plover River near Plover, Wisconsin, stretches of which ran dry in past years, according to a new scientific report.
A new report illustrates how groundwater pumping can affect the amount of water available in streams within the Malad-Lower Bear River Area in Utah. The product was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Utah Department of Natural Resources, Division of Water Rights.
New USGS assessment provides fresh insights into nation’s brackish groundwater inventory
USGS provides a long-term look at changes in the quality of our nation’s rivers and streams