National Water Quality Program

Science Center Objects

Sustaining the quality of the Nation's water resources and the health of our diverse ecosystems depends on the availability of sound water-resources data and information to develop effective, science-based policies. In 1991, Congress established the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) to address where, when, why, and how the Nation's water quality has changed, or is likely to change in the future, in response to human activities and natural factors. Since then, NAWQA has been a leading source of scientific data and knowledge used by national, regional, state, and local agencies to develop science-based policies and management strategies to improve and protect water resources used for drinking water, recreation, irrigation, energy development, and ecosystem needs.

NAWQA Water Quality Topics

NAWQA Quicklinks

NAWQA Glossary 



Streamgage with water quality instruments, Glynn County, Georgia

Surface Water and Ecology

Water Quality and Ecology of Small Streams (RSQA)
   RSQA studies the relations between stressors and stream ecology across large regions of the United States.
   ► RSQA Results

Water Quality in Rivers and Streams: Current Conditons and Long-Term Trends
    Monitors current conditions and long-term trends in water chemistry  and aquatic ecology in the Nation’s streams and rivers.


Modeling Contaminant Loads in Rivers and Streams (SPARROW)
     SPARROW models the relations between human activities, natural processes, and contaminant transport by linking monitoring data with information on watershed characteristics and contaminant sources.


Sampling well in Glynn County, Georgia



Groundwater Quality: Current Conditions and Long-Term Trends

Groundwater Quality: Predictions for Unmonitored Areas