About the Missouri Geological Survey
Serving Missouri Citizens Since 1853
The department’s Missouri Geological Survey (MGS) serves the citizens of Missouri by providing systematic geoscience information to support stewardship of water, land and mineral resources. MGS interprets the state’s geological setting and the availability of its energy and mineral resources for economic development in an environmentally safe manner; assuring mined land is returned to the best possible condition for use after mining is completed.
Our work and products are developed for professional, technical and educational use. We provide technical oversight for many geologic investigations and issues in the state, assist citizens in interpretation and understanding of our subsurface resources, and serve as the technical assistance agency for the department.
A primary responsibility of our agency is to investigate and report on the state's geological resources. We conduct more than 500 geologic site investigations each year in an effort to locate waste disposal facilities in safe environments.
MGS produces geologic maps and provides technical assistance to the citizens of Missouri by evaluating the causes and repercussions of earthquakes, landslide development and sinkhole and mine collapse. The users of these maps include geologists, engineers, planners, real estate developers, legislators, the general public and various government agencies.
We ascertain that new water wells are constructed to minimum standards as set by the state regulations. This helps to ensure that our groundwater resources are protected from contamination due to poor well construction. We are responsible for the regulation of the construction of private water wells (this includes domestic and multiple family class wells), irrigation wells, monitoring wells and heat pump wells. Regulating proper plugging of all types of wells is another responsibility for which we are accountable. Our job is to balance the concerns of the land owner and the driller, while at the same time performing our overall directive of protecting Missouri's vast underground water supply from contamination due to improper construction and abandonment of wells.
MGS is the authority for water quantity issues such as statewide water use and availability, water resources monitoring and planning, drought assessment, flood and hydrology studies, wetland studies and dam and reservoir safety.
MGS works closely with university, government, industry and community partners to ensure response to the diverse needs of Missouri.
At our McCracken Core Library and Research Center, we have more than 2.5 million feet of drill core samples cataloged and stored for research purposes. Drill cores are used for the study of the rock layers beneath the surface, to aid in the definition of the physical properties of aquifers, to provide data for waste disposal site studies, to assist in characterizing our mineral resources, and for educational purposes. Examination of rock core in this library saves considerable time and money and often eliminates the need for costly, new drill holes.
We sell Missouri geologic and topographic maps, along with a variety of technical and general-interest maps, publications, books and rock and mineral sets at our sales counter located in the Buehler Building, in Rolla. You also can download many items from our e-pubs library, which is online, 24/7.
When you visit, you also will find educational displays in our Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology. These include rocks,minerals, fossils, descriptions of the geologic history of Missouri and more.
We invite you to visit our Rolla headquarters. We have served the citizens of Missouri since 1853 and are proud of the expertise of our agency. If you cannot visit us in Rolla, perhaps we will meet you on a site where we spend a good deal of time outside the office working with citizens.