©2019 by Global Rivers Group

Global Rivers Group
@Texas A&M

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


We're a growing academic research group in the Department of Geography at Texas A&M University. Founded in 2018 by Dr. George H. Allen, we are actively recruiting students interested in using emerging technology to tackle global-scale questions involving freshwater resources, floods, and a changing planet.

What we do

We study rivers, streams, and other water bodies using remote sensing, fieldwork, and models. We seek to understand how climate change and land use change are altering the global water cycle, in particular river hydrology. With rapid advancements in remote sensing technology, computing power, and model sophistication, it is truly 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 surface water resources worldwide.



Updated Nov 19th, 2019

Nov 19, 2019 - George presents his research at the TAMU Institute for Sustainable Communities Distinguished Speaker Series

Nov 2-8, 2019 - George travels to Manaus, Brazil to present at the South America Water from Space Conference.

Oct 29, 2019 - George and TAMU undergraduate Will Maddux travel to Galveston, TX to attend to 2nd annual Texas Plastic Pollution Symposium. 

Oct 18-19, 2019 - George travels to Denton, TX to give a colloquium talk for the University of North Texas Department of Geography Crosscurrents Seminar.  

Oct 16, 2019 - Manuscript led by Dr. Xiao Yang (at UNC) accepted to Nature! This study quantifies the decline of Earth's river ice using big data remote sensing and then forecasts future declines using climate simulations: <Link coming soon>

Oct 11, 2019 - Manuscript by lead author, Dr. Safat Sikder (at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory), accepted to Frontiers in Environmental Science that examines the accuracy of global runoff products using the RAPID flow routing model in south and southeastern Asia: https://doi.org/10.3389/fenvs.2019.00171

Oct 2, 2019 - Abstracts accepted to 2019 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco. George will deliver two talks: https://agu.confex.com/agu/fm19/meetingapp.cgi/Person/28897

Sep 23-27, 2019 - George travels to UNM Sevilleta Field Station in New Mexico for an NSF-sponsored Dry Rivers Research Coordination Network Workshop: https://www.dryriversrcn.org/ 

Sep 15, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to Biogeochemistry by lead author Dr. Alberto Borges (at the University of Liège) that quantifies greenhouse gas (CO2, CH4, N2O) concentrations in the Congo River basin: https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-16-3801-2019

Sep 3, 2019 - Recent paper led by Peirong Lin (at Princeton) featured as an AGU EOS Editor's research highlight: 

August 27, 2019 - Ryan Riggs, BS Louisiana State University with honors, joins the Global Rivers Group as a PhD student. Welcome Ryan!

July 25, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to Water Resources Research by lead author Eric Barefoot (at Rice) that documents the lateral and longitudinal dynamics of headwater streams in Duke Forest, NC. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018WR023877

July 14, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to Water Resources Research by lead author Peirong Lin (at Princeton) that presents the first high-resolution global simulation of daily river discharge (from 1979 to 2014). https://doi.org/10.1029/2019WR025287

July 12, 2019 - AGU EOS Research Spotlight has highlighted our recent publication in Water Resources ResearchA More Accurate Global River Map

May 28, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters by lead author Xiao Yang (at UNC) describing RivWidthCloud: an automated Google Earth Engine tool for river width extraction
from remotely sensed imagery. https://doi.org/10.1109/LGRS.2019.2920225

May 18, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to Water Resources Research by lead author Dai Yamazaki (at Univ. Tokyo) presenting MERIT Hydro: the new state-of-the-art global DEM for hydrologic applications. 

April 8, 2019 - X-Grant preliminary proposal "Developing a CubeSat to track the global movement of water, carbon and sediment across landscapes" makes it to the final round of the competition. 

March 15, 2019 - Manuscript accepted to Geophysical Research Letters by lead author Renato Frasson (at Ohio State) on the global relationships between river width, slope, catchment area, meander wavelength, sinuosity, and discharge: https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GL082027

February 25, 2019 - X-Grant one-pager "Launching a CubeSat to track the global movement of water, carbon and sediment across landscapes" makes it to the next round of the competition. 

January 28-30, 2019 - G.H. Allen travels to Bethesda, MD for a Department of Energy sponsored workshop:
Leveraging Distributed Research Networks to Understand Watershed System

December 13, 2018 - 2018 PESCA Grant Proposal Funded! "Developing a Method for the Rapid Detection of Freshwater Plastic Pollution" by PI Allen, Co-I Filippi, Co-I Guneralp, and Co-I Conckle