The United States Geographical Survey, (USGS) was formed in 1879 and is headquartered in Reston, Virginia with regional offices throughout the U.S. The primary responsibilities of the USGS is to conduct scientific inquiry and study of wild life, plant life, geological studies and mapping, earthquake and volcanic activity, geomagnetic field, and hydrology. USGS has no enforcement authority and reports to the Department of Interior. In recent years USGS has taken charge of studying planetary rocks, minerals and water.
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