For the more information about water resources in the National Park Service, please visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/water/.


Guidance Documents and Useful References

Keyhole Arch at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.
Keyhole Arch, Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

All NRCAs follow a common set of national guidelines and requirements. Within the sideboards established by that guidance, parks and study investigators have substantial flexibility—and are encouraged to be innovative—in developing study design details that are a good fit for the park's local circumstances and highest-priority information needs.

National Guidelines and Requirements

  • Apply to all 2009 (and subsequent year) project starts
  • Identify minimum requirements and outline project-level flexibility
  • Will be revised on an as-needed basis

(Note that departure from these requirements requires prior approval from NRCA program leads at region and national office levels—see list of contacts.)

Standard Report Outline + Standard Chapter 1

Air Resources Guidance (applies to all projects)

Optional Peer Review form (helps identify final product expectations)

General Standards, Requirements, and Project Flexibility

'Publishers Note' Instructions for Projects that Don't Meet the Above Guidance


More information on frameworks and reference conditions/values as defined and used in NRCAs is available.

Last Updated: February 13, 2014