Hydrology is the study of the cycling of water through different reservoirs on Earth. It also refers to the cycling of liquids such as hydrocarbons on other planets. Hydrology focuses on the distribution of water in the subsurface, surface and atmosphere, the chemistry of that water, and the effects of climate on the water cycle.


Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Comments and Opinion |

    As the climate warms, we can’t restore waterways to pristine condition, but models can predict potential changes, argue Jonathan D. Tonkin, N. LeRoy Poff and colleagues.

    • Jonathan D. Tonkin
    • , N. LeRoy Poff
    • , Nick R. Bond
    • , Avril Horne
    • , David. M. Merritt
    • , Lindsay V. Reynolds
    • , Julian D. Olden
    • , Albert Ruhi
    •  & David A. Lytle
    Nature 570, 301-303
  • News and Views |

    Ecosystem-service assessments often fail to account for groundwater’s role in the ecosystem. Whether groundwater is important for these services depends strongly on the assessment scale and the local context.

    • P. James Dennedy-Frank
  • Comments and Opinion |

    A strategic mix of solar, wind and storage technologies around river basins would be safer and cheaper than building large dams, argue Rafael J. P. Schmitt, Noah Kittner and colleagues.

    • Rafael J. P. Schmitt
    • , Noah Kittner
    • , G. Mathias Kondolf
    •  & Daniel M. Kammen
    Nature 569, 330-332
  • News and Views |

    Humans have altered the natural flow of rivers, adversely affecting biodiversity and the services that these watercourses provide. The mapping of millions of kilometres of rivers reveals the extent of human interference.

    • N. LeRoy Poff
    Nature 569, 201-202