Global Rivers Group
@Texas A&M

We use satellites, models, and fieldwork to study Earth's freshwater


We're an academic research group in the Department of Geography at Texas A&M University. Founded in 2018 by Dr. George H. Allen, we are recruiting students and postdocs who are interested in using emerging technology to tackle problems involving freshwater resources. 

What we do

We study freshwater resources using remote sensing, fieldwork, and models. We seek to understand how climate change and land use are altering the global water cycle, in particular river and lake hydrology. With rapid advancements in satellite technology, computing power, and model sophistication, it is an exciting time to be studying the global water cycle.


Why we do it

Water is widely considered to be the world’s most vital natural resource, yet freshwater systems are directly endangered by human activities. Our work is motivated by a desire to promote the conservation, management, and understanding of Earth's surface water resources.



Updated April 23, 2021

Apr 20, 2021 - GRG Ph.D student Ryan Riggs awarded First Prize in Geology/Geography/Geophysics for his presentation, "Estimating discharge from Landsat" for the TAMU Student Research Week. Congrats, Ryan!

Apr 5, 2021 - Paper led by Judith Rosentreter at Yale published in Nature Geosciences which presents a global metadata analysis of methane fluxes from all aquatic ecosystems. Half of the methane in the atmosphere comes from aquatic systems, including rivers & lakes:

- Related news article: [link]

Mar 12, 2021 - Paper led by Jake Hosen at Purdue published in Hydrological Processes on the relationship between river water travel time and dissolved organic matter composition:  

Mar 8, 2021 - George gives a seminar talk at Virginia Tech for Remote Sensing Interdisciplinary Graduate Education Program as the student-nominated speaker. 

Feb 8, 2021 - GRG M.S. student Ennis Rios awarded the Mills Scholarship for conducting water-related research on remote sensing of river water temperature. Congratulations, Ennis! 

Feb 7, 2021 - Paper led by Alessandra Marzadri (University of Trento, Italy) and Giuseppe Amatulli (Yale) published in Science of The Total Environment on estimating global nitrous oxide emissions from rivers and streams:


Jan 26, 2021 - Paper led by Peirong Lin at Princeton University published in Scientific Data. This paper presents a state-of-the-art global vector hydrography dataset of rivers with spatially variable drainage density and flow intermittence. An innovative example of using machine learning to extend information from the national scale to the global scale. Great job, Peirong!


Jan 13, 2021 - Paper led by Yao Li at Texas A&M Department of Civil Engineering published in IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing on tracking reservoir storage variations using TanDEM-X satellite mission inSAR data:


Dec 17, 2020 - Paper led by John Hammond at the USGS published in Geophysical Research Letters on the spatial patterns and drivers of no-flow regimes in the contiguous United States. Dr. James Famiglietti Tweeted that this paper "looks like a modern classic": 

Dec 9, 2020 - Two coauthored papers, Lin et al. (2019) and Yamazaki et al. (2019), received the Editor's Choice Award from Water Resources Research. Editors’ Choice Award are given to about 1% of published articles in any calendar year to provide professional recognition to scientists for their outstanding work. The selection is made by the Editors of WRR based on technical significance, novelty, originality, presentation, and broader implications of the publication. 

Nov 23, 2020 - Paper led by Yuta  Ishitsuka at the University of Massachusetts Amherst published in Water Resources Research. This study combines millions of river remote sensing measurements and hydrologic modeling to produce daily discharge estimates over the Missouri River basin. This study forms the basis of a global effort underway at Fluvial@UMass:

Oct 6, 2020 - Ryan, Ennis, and George have their abstracts accepted to the AGU Fall Meeting 2020. George will also convene a session entitled, Remote Sensing and Modeling of Global Rivers from the Headwaters to the Ocean


Aug 17, 2020 - John Morgan (BS Geology, Western Carolina University, Summa Cum Laude) joins the Global Rivers Group. He will be working on constraining global estimates of river and stream surface area using remote sensing and fieldwork. Welcome John! 


We are actively recruiting graduate students to join the GRG@TAMU. If you are interested, please email George for more information. Funding is available!