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 virtual science seminars! Learn more, and see the upcoming schedule of speakers.

Science Seminars


Date published: July 21, 2021

Studying earthquakes from lake sediment: Lacustrine paleoseismology in Alaska

USGS researchers in Alaska, including geologist and Mendenhall Fellow Drake Singleton of the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center, are using techniques from a discipline known as lake paleoseismology, studying cores of lake sediment to reconstruct past seismic activity. 

Date published: July 14, 2021

2021 North Atlantic Stepping Stones Expedition

At 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on Wednesday, July 14, you are invited to join a live event introducing the 2021 North Atlantic Stepping Stones: New England and Corner Rise Seamounts expedition.


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Year Published: 2021

Twenty-first-century projections of shoreline change along inlet-interrupted coastlines

Sandy coastlines adjacent to tidal inlets are highly dynamic and widespread landforms, where large changes are expected due to climatic and anthropogenic influences. To adequately assess these important changes, both oceanic (e.g., sea-level rise) and terrestrial (e.g., fluvial sediment supply) processes that govern the local sediment budget must...

Bamunawala, Janaka; Ranasinghe, Roshanka; Dastgheib, Ali; Nichols, Robert .J.; Murray, A. Brad; Barnard, Patrick L.; Sirisena, T. A. J. G.; Duong, Trang Minh; Hulscher, Suzanne J. M. H.; van der Spek, Ad

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Year Published: 2021

New geochemical tools for investigating resource and energy functions at deep-sea cold seeps using amino-acid δ15N in chemosymbiotic mussels (Bathymodiolus childressi)

In order to reconstruct the ecosystem structure of chemosynthetic environments in the fossil record, geochemical proxies must be developed. Here, we present a suite of novel compound-specific isotope parameters for tracing chemosynthetic production with a focus on understanding nitrogen dynamics in deep-sea cold seep environments. We examined the...

Vokhshoori, Natasha; McCarthy, Matt; Close, Hilary; Demopoulos, Amanda; Prouty, Nancy G.

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Year Published: 2021

Land-based sediment sources and transport to southwest Puerto Rico coral reefs after Hurricane Maria, May 2017 to June 2018

The effects of runoff from land on nearshore ecosystems, including coral reef communities, are influenced by both sediment supply and removal by coastal processes. Integrated studies across the land-sea interface describing sources and transport of terrestrial sediment and its nearshore fate allow reef protection initiatives to target...

Takesue, Renee K.; Sherman, Clark E; Reyes, Aaron O.; Cheriton, Olivia; Ramirez, Natalia I.; Viqueira Ríos, Roberto; Storlazzi, Curt