United States Geological Survey

National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA)

Southern Florida Study Unit

Southern Florida NAWQA Study Unit Area

The Nation's water resources are the basis for life and our economic vitality. These resources support a complex web of human activities and fishery and wildlife needs that depend upon clean water. Demands for good-quality water for drinking, recreation, farming, and industry are rising, and as a result, the American public is concerned about the condition and sustainablity of our water resources. The American public is asking: Is it safe to swim in and drink water from our rivers or lakes? Can we eat the fish that come from them? Is our ground water polluted? Is water quality degrading with time, and if so, why? Has all the money we've spent to clean up our waters, done any good? The U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program was designed to provide information that will help answer these questions.

NAWQA is designed to assess historical, current, and future water-quality conditions in representative river basins and aquifers nationwide. One of the primary objectives of the program is to describe relations between natural factors, human activities, and water-quality conditions and to define those factors that most affect water quality in different parts of the Nation. The linkage of water quality to environmental processes is of fundamental importance to water-resource managers, planners, and policy makers. It provides a strong and unbiased basis for better decisionmaking by those responsible for making decisions that affect our water resources, including the United States Congress, Federal, State, and local agencies, environmental groups, and industry. Information from the NAWQA Program also will be useful for guiding research, monitoring, and regulatory activities in cost effective ways.

The NAWQA Program's unique design provides consistent and comparable information on water resources in 60 important river basins and aquifers across the Nation. Together, these areas account for 60 to 70 percent of the Nation's water use and population served by public water supplies and cover about one-half of the land area of the Nation. Investigations of these 60 areas, referred to as study units, are the principal building blocks of the NAWQA Program.

Ground-Water Data


Project Members

Liaison Committee Members

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Last modified: February 13, 2003