USGS Ohio Water Science Center
What we're doing...
Characterizing Water Quality In The Muskingum Watershed.
2/3/2016 -- The USGS and Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) are cooperating to characterize the surface-water quality in the eastern part of the Muskingum Watershed, where many of the largest reservoirs in the watershed are located and where shale-gas drilling is particularly focused. Water-quality and streamflow data are being collected under a variety of streamflow conditions six times at thirty sites around six of the reservoirs. Additionally, there are weather stations at the lakes, and lake and stream gages at some of the water-quality sites measure real-time lake level, stage, discharge, and (or) continuous water-quality parameters such as specific conductance and stream temperature (link to real-time gage data).
Predicting Harmful Algal Blooms.
11/20/2015 -- new report describes a study to predict cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms (cyanoHABs) at Ohio recreational lake sites. A cyanoHAB is a large growth of bacteria that produces toxins such as microcystin. CyanoHABs are a major water-quality issue for Lake Erie and inland lakes in Ohio. Staff collected data and made water quality and environmental measurements that were used to identify the potential for a system to quickly estimate microcystin levels and provide advisories to swimmers and boaters. This type of system has been used at Lake Erie beaches as part of the Ohio Nowcast for predicting E. coli concentrations, but has not been tested for cyanoHAB predictions. The results of this study showed that water-quality and environmental factors are promising for use in site-specific models for cyanoHAB predictions.
Striving To Prevent Reservoir Taste And Odor Issues.
9/28/2015 -- The City of Columbus and the USGS are collaborating on a synoptic survey of the lower portion of Hoover Reservoir to better understand factors that could affect taste and odor issues. The study includes measuring and mapping the bathymetry, water velocity, and selected water-quality characteristics during separate extended releases from two different release valves at the Reservoir to Big Walnut Creek. The results from the study will provide the City with information needed to make more informed decisions on reservoir releases.
Water Resources Programs in Ohio
Ohio WSC Fact Sheets