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New York Water Science Center 

The Federal-State Groundwater Monitoring Network in New York

By John H. Williams


summary pdf

The United States Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), monitors a network of observation wells throughout New York to provide current information on the effect of climatic conditions on groundwater levels.

The groundwater monitoring network began in the 1930s, and by the 1960s consisted of 48 wells completed in unconsolidated and bedrock aquifers. However, in 1995, due to budget constraints, the network was reduced to only 14 wells, all in unconsolidated aquifers. When deficiencies in the observation-well coverage became widely known during the droughts of the late 1990s, funding was made available to the NYSDEC and USGS to expand the network by reactivation of old wells and installation of new wells.

At present, there are 95 observation wells in unconsolidated and bedrock aquifers, 87 of which are equipped with telemetry for near real time data transmission. Daily groundwater levels and 10-year hydrographs for each well site are published in the USGS Water Resources Annual Data Reports for New York. In addition, monthly assessments of ground-water conditions, based on frequency statistical analysis of the monitoring data, are provided on the WEB at

First posted October, 2012

For additional information contact:
(1) Director
U.S. Geological Survey
Troy Program Office
New York Water Science Center
425 Jordan Road
Troy, NY 12180

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