Water Quality Database

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Note: I have done statistical analyses of this database several times in the past for the EPA Statistics User Group and the Chesapeake Bay Program, so it will be fun to do this again! Make it a self-actuating database (e.g., RDF).

First I looked at the database (see Excel file below - 25 MB) at Data.gov and then I looked at the Water Quality Database in the Bay Barometer.



Source: http://www.data.gov/details/1424

Dataset Summary

Agency: Environmental Protection Agency


Category:  Geography and Environment

Date Released: 01/16/1984

Date Updated: 01/08/2010

Time Period: 01/25/1984 - 10/29/2009 

Frequency:  bi-monthly to monthly

Description:  The Chesapeake Information Management System (CIMS), designed in 1996, is an integrated, accessible information management system for the Chesapeake Bay Region. CIMS is an organized, distributed library of information and software tools designed to increase basin-wide public access to Chesapeake Bay information. The information delivered by CIMS includes technical and public information, educational material, environmental indicators, policy documents, and scientific data. Through the use of relational databases, web-based programming, and web-based GIS a large number of Internet resources have been established. These resources include multiple distributed on-line databases, on-demand graphing and mapping of environmental data, and geographic searching tools for environmental information. Baseline monitoring data, summarized data and environmental indicators that document ecosystem status and trends, confirm linkages between water quality, habitat quality and abundance, and the distribution and integrity of biological populations are also available. One of the major features of the CIMS network is the Chesapeake Bay Program's Data Hub, providing users access to a suite of long- term water quality and living resources databases. Chesapeake Bay mainstem and tidal tributary water quality, benthic macroinvertebrates, toxics, plankton, and fluorescence data can be obtained for a network of over 800 monitoring stations.

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Dataset Information

Data.gov Data Category Type: Raw Data Catalog

Specialized Data Category Designation: Research

Keywords: Chesapeake Bay, water quality data, nutrients, field parameters, tributary, salinity, estuary, monitor, biology, biological, habitat, toxic, pollution, environmental, indicators, education, science, research

Unique: ID 1424

Contributing Agency Information

Citation: Chesapeake Bay Water Quality Database, http://www.chesapeakebay.net/data_waterquality.aspx

Agency Program Page: Chesapeake Bay Program, http://www.chesapeakebay.net/

Agency Data Series Page: Water Quality Data, http://www.chesapeakebay.net/data_waterquality.aspx

Dataset Coverage

Unit of Analysis: Water quality data in the Chesapeake Bay watershed

Granularity: latitude/longitude pair

Geographic Coverage: latitude: 36.7361 - 42.3777 degree N longitude: -79.8976 - -75.1324 degree W

Data Description

Collection Mode: person/paper, person/computer

Data Collection Instrument: http://www.chesapeakebay.net/data_waterquality.aspx

Data Dictionary/Variable List: http://archive.chesapeakebay.net/pubs/cbwqdb2004_RB.PDF

Additional Dataset Documentation:

Technical Documentation: http://archive.chesapeakebay.net/pubs/cbwqdb2004_RB.PDF

Additional Metadata: http://www.chesapeakebay.net/data_waterquality.aspx

Self-actuating Database


1. Import 25 MB CSV/Text file into Excel - this requires two sheets because of the very large numberof rows!

2. Sort the two Excel sheets by parameter (e.g. DO-dissolved oxygen) and merge the sheets by paramter.

3. Generate time-series, scatterplots, etc. in the spreadsheet and for posting to the Wiki.

4. Other as suggested by the results and others looking at the results.

I had an interesting experience trying to do this list of tasks: I found that only 2008 data was available from Data.gov, and that all of the data was available for download from http://www.chesapeakebay.net/data_waterquality.aspx and there are other links that already provide neat graphical analyses of the data! I have asked both Data.gov and the Chesapeake Bay Program for an explanation. Stay tuned!


No, because of the size of our database we only posted the 2008 data as an example of what exists in the database. Use the links provided at data.gov to query the database, or use the link below.



-----Original Message-----
From: Niemann.Brand@epamail.epa.gov [mailto:Niemann.Brand@epamail.epa.gov
Sent: Tuesday, February 02, 2010 3:07 PM
To: Mike Mallonee
Subject: Question About Posting at Data.gov

Mike, Hello. I downloaded the CBP WQ data at
http://www.data.gov/details/1424 expecting to find data for 1984-2008
but only found data for 2008. Am I missing something here?

Thanks, Brand


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