Intermediate Resources

U.S.G.S. Water Science For Schools

What is the Water Footprint Network?

The Water Footprint Network is a dynamic, international learning community. We are a platform for connecting diverse communities interested in sustainability, equitability and efficiency of water use.
This Is A Must Read PDF by Arjen Y. Hoekstra and Mesfin M. Mekonnen Department of Water Engineering and Management, University of Twente, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, The Netherlands Edited by Peter H. Gleick, Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security, Oakland, CA, and approved December 21, 2011 (received for review June 20, 2011)

  1. Sign the WATER BILL OF RIGHTS, a statement of principles affirming that all Americans have the right to safe, clean drinking water at replenishable levels.
  2. Fix leaks. You’ll conserve hundreds of gallons of water a year and save on your utility bill as well.
  3. Say ‘No’ to bottled water. It takes three times the water you’re drinking just to create the bottle. Plus, you’ll save money.
  4. Change your garden practices. More plants die from overwatering than underwatering. If you live in a dry community, try native plants instead of water-guzzling grass.
  5. Eat less meat, especially beef. It takes 1,800 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef, more than three times that of chicken or pork.
  6. Choose products with the EPA’s WaterSense label, which indicates that a product is water efficient and is contributing to overall water conservation.
  7. You’ve got a trash can. Use it. Don’t throw your garbage in the toilet, which can use up to seven gallons of water per flush.
  8. Only wash full loads. In both your laundry machine and dishwasher, try to limit yourself to full loads only.
  9. Turn off lights when you’re not using them. A single 60-watt light bulb uses up to five liters of water for every hour it stays on.
  10. Understand the “hidden water” cost of what you do every day.Use National Geographic’s Water Calculator to test your true water footprint.

Weight: 62.416 pounds/cubic foot at 32°F; 1,000 kilograms/cubic meter

Weight: 61.998 pounds/cubic foot at 100°F; 993 kilograms/cubic meter

Weight: 8.33 pounds/gallon; 1 kilogram/liter

Density: 1 gram/cubic centimeter (cc) at 39.2°F, 0.95865 gram/cc at 212°F

1 gallon = 4 quarts = 8 pints = 128 fluid ounces = 3.7854 liters

1 liter = 0.2642 gallons = 1.0568 quart

1 million gallons = 3.069 acre-feet = 133,685.64 cubic feet

Flow rates: 1 cubic foot/second (cfs) = 449 gallons/minute = 0.646 million gallons/day = 1.98 acre-feet/day

Dictionary of Technical Terms Related to Drinking Water

Apple: 19 gallons for one apple
Beef: 4,100 gallons per kg of beef
Beer: 20 gallons for one glass of beer
Bread: 11 gallons for one slice of wheat bread
Cheese: 1,320 gallons for 1 kg of cheese
Chicken: 1,030 gallons for 1 kg of chicken meat
Coconuts: 660 gallons for 1 kg of coconut
Coffee: 37 gallons for 1 cup of coffee
Cotton: 715 gallons for 1 cotton shirt
Eggs: 55 gallons for one egg
Hamburger: 635 gallons for one hamburger
Industrial: 21 gallons per US$ of industrial product
Maize: 240 gallons for 1 kg of maize
Millet: 1320 gallons for 1 kg of millet
Milk: 265 gallons for 1 liter of milk
Orange: 13 gallons for 1 orange
Paper: 2.6 gallons for one A4-sheet of paper
Pork: 1270 gallons for 1 kg of pork
Potato: 240 gallons for 1 kg of potato flakes
A bag of potato crisps (200 grams): 50 gallons
Rice: 900 gallons for 1 kg of rice
Sheep: 1,615 gallons for 1 kg of sheep meat
Soybeans: 475 gallons for 1 kg of soybeans
Sugar: 400 gallons for 1 kg of cane sugar
Tea: 8 gallons for one cup of tea
Wheat: 345 gallons for 1 kg of wheat
Wine: 32 gallons for one glass of wine

 

USGS Water School

Data Tables/Maps

 Files/Adobe PDF

USGS Water School Continued

U.S.G.S Has An Excellent General Information Page

Water Now

WaterAlert
Click here to go to WaterAlertHow can I be alerted to water conditions that exceed thresholds that are important to me, such as high water levels or temperatures? How do I find locations where these alerts may be available?

 

Real-time streamflow
Click here to go to Real-Time StreamflowWhere is the USGS collecting and transmitting real-time streamflow data right now? How does flow today compare with historical streamflow? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data? (Fact Sheet)

 

Real-time flood data

Click here to go to WaterWatch flood data
Where in the Nation are floods or very high flows occurring now? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data?

 

Real-time drought data
Click here to go to WaterWatch drought dataWhere in the Nation are droughts or very low flows occurring now? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data?

 

Real-time ground-water levels

Click here to go to the real-time ground-water level network
Where is the USGS collecting and transmitting real-time ground-water levels right now? How do levels today compare with historical levels? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data?

Recent ground-water levels

 

Click here to go to the Active Water-Level NetworkWhere in the Nation is the USGS currently collecting ground-water level data? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data? Data shown on these maps may be as recent as a few minutes old or may be from as long as a year ago.

Ground-water response to climate

Click here to go to the Climate Response NetworkWhere are the wells that are highly sensitive to climate variations where the USGS is currently collecting ground-water level data? What are the long-term and short-term trends in water levels?
How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data? (Fact Sheet)

Real-time surface water quality
Click here to go to Water Quality WatchWhere is the USGS collecting and transmitting real-time water quality data? How do levels today compare with historical levels? These data are limited to measurable characteristics such as temperature, turbidity, specific conductance (salinity), dissolved oxygen and pH (acidity).
How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data?

Recreation
Click here to go to American WhitewaterI want to find streamflow or water-level data that will tell me if a particular river will be suitable for rafting, kayaking, or fishing today. Some recreation links leave the USGS web sites.

USGS has a general information page atrecreation.usgs.gov

Private organizations such as American Whitewater provide alternative resources that use USGS and other information for planning water-based activities.

Water Then

Annual water data reports
Click here to go to the WDR MapperCan I see all of the locations where the USGS has published water resources data for a particular year? How can I see these sites on a map and get to the data?You can retrieve data using a map or a search form.

 

Instantaneous streamflow data
Click here to go to the Instantaneous Data ArchiveI want to find long-term streamflow data reported in short time intervals (such as 15 minutes or 1 hour) rather than as daily averages. Where can I see a list of those sites and get to the data?

National Water Quality Assesmaent 

Click here to go to the NAWQA Network
The NAWQA program provides a search to physical, chemical, sediment, and biological data that have been collected as part of the national program, including some aquatic ecological data that can not be stored in NWIS. (Fact Sheet)

 

Water use in the United States
Click here to go to USGS water-use dataUse of water in the United States is tracked by USGS in cooperation with state, tribal, and local governments.

Some notable collections of USGS water data

 

 

Click to go to the sediment data collection.

Sediment data collected by USGS is stored in NWIS and is also described in a dedicated web page and report.A Reservoir Sedimentation Databasefrom federal agencies is also maintained by USGS.

 

 

Click to go to the Hydro-Climatic Data Network collection.

The Hydro-Climatic Data Networkprovides streamflow data between 1874 and 1988 and is useful in studying climate change.

 

 

 

Click to go to the National Stream Quality Accounting Network collection.

The National Stream Quality Accounting Network provides ongoing characterization of the concentrations and transport of sediment and chemicals in the Nation’s largest rivers.

 

 

Click to go to the National Atmospheric Deposition Program collection.

USGS is the lead federal agency for monitoring of acid rain and related issues as part of the National Atmospheric Deposition Program.

 

 

Click on the Principal Aquifer Map and you can view the report, Estimated Withdrawals from Principal Aquifers in the United States, 2000.

 

 

Ground-Water Atlas and National Atlas provide many maps that summarize water resources data and related information.

Water Tomorrow

USGS collects most of the water data in the Nation, but official forecasts are made by other agencies. Forecasts are subject to any limitations and disclaimers made by the issuing agencies. In all cases, professionals should always be consulted concerning decisions that may affect safety of people or property or economic risk.

Forecasts

Water-resources planning and forecasts are done by other federal, regional, state, local, and tribal agencies. In most cases, USGS partners with these agencies to provide reliable current and historical water data that are essential for making accurate forecasts. These links leave the USGS web sites.

The National Weather Service is the primary federal agency for water resources forecasting, including:

Statistics

USGS water data and statistics are used by other agencies to estimate future conditions and to assess risks such as flooding and drought. Planners and engineers use USGS water data, statistics, and other data for design of systems for water supply, flood control, environmental protection, and recreation.

Click here to go to USGS Streamgage Statistics Streamflow statistics at USGS gages
Where can I find an analysis of long-term flow statistics for USGS streamgages?WaterWatchprovides basic flow statistics computed from daily streamflow values, including the daily average, minimum, and maximum streamflow; and flow duration curve for the period of observed data.Additional statistics are computed from daily streamflow values, flood peak flows, and measured low flows, and include, for example, 100-year flood; 7-day, 10-year low flow; and mean annual flow. Statistics such as these are commonly used to help estimate reliability of water supplies and risks of floods or droughts, and may be available in published reports or from StreamStats. However, all flow statistics will vary over time due to extreme floods or droughts, so a local USGS Water Science Center should always be contacted for up-to-date information.
Click here to go to National Streamflow Statistics Click here to go to USGS StreamStats application Estimate streamflow statistics anywhere
Where can I obtain estimates of streamflow statistics for locations where USGS streamgages are not operated?National Streamflow Statistics is a downloadable computer program that requires user input of drainage area and other watershed characteristics. Statistics that are available vary among states. (Fact Sheet)StreamStats provides tools to estimate required inputs for the National Streamflow Statistics computer program, and is currently available for about half of states, with additional states being added regularly. (Fact Sheet)

 

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