Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center


We conduct multidisciplinary scientific research in the coastal and offshore areas of California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, and other US Pacific Islands; and in other waterways of the United States.

Research Projects

Research Projects

Read about our science projects, find out where we are working, and discover the reasons why our research matters.

Explore Our Science

Science Seminar Series

Science Seminar Series

Join us for our next virtual seminar! View the upcoming schedule. A list of our past presenters is also available.

Science Seminars


Date published: May 14, 2021

Hurricane Preparedness Week

The 2021 National Hurricane Preparedness Week is May 9th to May 15th, a week dedicated to sharing knowledge about hurricane hazards that can be used to prepare and take action!    


Date published: May 12, 2021

USGS Scientists Add Another Piece to Puzzle of How Hurricanes Can Gain Strength

Unique observations collected by U.S. Geological Survey scientists during Hurricane María in 2017, revealed previously unknown ocean processes that may aid in more accurate hurricane forecasting and impact predictions.

March 31, 2021

Sound Waves Newsletter - December 2020-March 2021

Read about the challenges of conducting research during a pandemic, how USGS scientists conducted a nationwide assessment of salt marsh vulnerability, and more, in this December 2020-March 2021 issue of Sound Waves.


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Year Published: 2021

Short communication: evidence for geologic control of rip channels along Prince Edward Island, Canada

Rip currents can move unsuspecting swimmers offshore rapidly and represent a significant risk to beach users worldwide, including along the northern coast of Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada. Although many rip currents are ephemeral and/or spatially variable in response to changes in the nearshore bar morphology and wave and tidal forcing, it is...

Wernette, Phillipe Alan; Houser, Chris

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Year Published: 2021

Rapid observations of ocean dynamics and stratification along a steep island coast during Hurricane María

Hurricanes are extreme storms that affect coastal communities, but the linkages between hurricane forcing and ocean dynamics remain poorly understood. Here, we present full water column observations at unprecedented resolution from the southwest Puerto Rico insular shelf and slope during Hurricane María, representing a rare set of high-frequency,...

Cheriton, Olivia; Storlazzi, Curt; Rosenberger, Kurt J.; Sherman, Clark E; Schmidt, Wilford

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Year Published: 2021

Coral reef restorations can be optimized to reduce coastal flooding hazards

Coral reefs are effective natural coastal flood barriers that protect adjacent communities. Coral degradation compromises the coastal protection value of reefs while also reducing their other ecosystem services, making them a target for restoration. Here we provide a physics-based evaluation of how coral restoration can reduce coastal flooding for...

Roelvink, Floortje; Storlazzi, Curt; van Dongeren, Ap; Pearson, Stuart