What We Do

The Water Resources Division of the National Park service works to conserve, protect and restore water resources in America's national parks. WRD provides assistance, expertise, and guidance for aquatic ecosystem stewardship in national parks. WRD provides its services through a broad range of programs in the areas of fisheries, information management, hydrology, ocean & coastal resources, wetlands, water quality, and water rights.

The division also provides oversight for Natural Resource Condition Assessments and State of the Parks, which provide park staff with tools to better understand park resources and to make more effective management decisions.

WRD is a team of scientists dedicated to preserving the planet’s most important resource.
WRD values:
Service: Appropriate products and services to meet park needs...
Quality: delivered efficiently, comprehensively, usefully, and timely...
Competence: in a manner that is professional, analytical, science-based, and credible.

The Water Resources Division supports National Parks directly through a broad range of programs contained in three branches:

Sunset at Everglades National Park

Aquatic Systems Branch

The Aquatic Systems Branch encompasses four areas of freshwater management: fisheries, hydrology, water quality, and wetlands.

Ocean wave crashing on shore

Ocean and Coastal Resources Branch

The Ocean and Coastal Resources Program works to advance ocean and Great Lakes stewardship in the National Park System.

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Water Rights Branch

NPS seeks to protect and conserve surface waters and groundwaters in park units as integral components of water and land.

Last updated: December 13, 2017