What We Are Doing

The USGS California Water Science Center is working in partnership with state and federal agencies to answer the following questions about oil and gas development and groundwater resources:

  • Where are protected groundwater resources?
  • How close are oil and gas operations and protected groundwater, and what geologic materials separate them?
  • Where is there evidence of fluids from oil and gas sources in protected groundwater? Where does evidence indicate no connections?
  • When fluids from oil and gas sources are present in protected groundwater, what pathways or processes are responsible for observed transport?
  • Have oil and gas operations as a whole contributed to water-quality changes in groundwater basins?

The program's framework was developed and adopted by the State Water Board in July 2015.

The USGS is the technical lead in implementing the State Water Boards' Oil and Gas Regional Groundwater Monitoring Program through the COGG program. The program receives funding from the State Water Board and USGS cooperative matching funds, and has received funding from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.