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Puget Sound Basin NAWQA Study
U.S. Geological Survey
934 Broadway,
Suite 300
Tacoma, WA 98402

(253) 552-1600
graphic line

Puget Sound Basin NAWQA

Surface Water Studies

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Assess the quality of some of the more than 100 streams and rivers that discharge to Puget Sound and incorporate this information into the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) national assessment of water quality. Three major components of Cycle I included:

Retrospective Studies (1995)

Purpose: Provide a first-cut analysis of general water-quality conditions within the study unit using existing water-quality data. Information on the occurrence and distribution of nutrients and pesticides in Puget Sound Basin streams was used to:

Fixed Station Water-Quality Sampling (1995-1998)

Eleven sites -- The results of sampling at Thornton Creek in the Lake Washington basin and 10 other stations in the Nooksack, Green, and Skokomish River basins-- are detailed in a final report.

Synoptic Sampling (1998)

Purpose: Evaluate the distribution of an individual water-quality constituent or group of constituents over a geographically dispersed area. Two studies were conducted in 1998:

Low Intensive Phase Sampling (1998-2004)

Selected study sites were monitored during the low-intensity phase to obtain data necessary for future evaluation of long-term trends in water quality. Three study sites - Thornton Creek, Duwamish River, and North Fork Skokomish River were maintained through 2004.

For information about Surface Water in the Puget Sound Basin, please contact , the Puget Sound Basin Study Unit Chief at (253) 552-1600, or email

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