Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center

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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 why it matters

Explore Our Science

Seminar Series

Seminar Series

Join us for public seminars at the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center in Santa Cruz, CA

Upcoming Seminars

News

Date published: February 4, 2020

USGS collaborates with National Park Service to study threatened coral reefs in American Samoa

USGS scientists from the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center and the St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center are cooperating with the National Park Service to better understand links between coastal groundwater and coral reef health on the island of Ofu in the National Park of American Samoa (NPSA).

Date published: December 31, 2019

The Challenges of Arctic Fieldwork

On a far-away island along Alaska’s North Slope coast, conducting fieldwork can be challenging.

Date published: December 31, 2019

Resilience along the West Coast—Science and Policy Coming Together to Strengthen Communities and the Environment

On Dec. 4, 2019, USGS scientist Patrick Barnard participated with other panelists in a congressional briefing looking at the issue of coastal impacts and solutions to lessen risk from sea-level rise, coastal inundation and storms along the west coast of the U.S.

Publications

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Year Published: 2020

Geographic and oceanographic influences on ferromanganese crust composition along a Pacific Ocean meridional transect, 14N to 14S

The major controls on the variability of ferromanganese (FeMn) crust composition have been generally described over the past 40 years; however, most compilation studies lack quantitative statistics and are limited to a small region of several seamounts or compare FeMn crusts from disparate areas of the global oceans. This study provides the first...

Mizell, Kira; Hein, James R.; Lam, Phoebe J. ; Koppers, Anthony A.P. ; Staudigel, Hubert

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Year Published: 2020

Controls on sediment distribution in the coastal zone of the central California transform continental margin, USA

We use >10,000 km of high-resolution seismic-reflection data together with multibeam bathymetry to document complex and highly variable post-Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) sediment distribution and thickness in the coastal zone (~10 m isobath to 5.6 km offshore) along a ~800 km section of central California's transform...

Johnson, Samuel; Beeson, Jeffrey W.; Watt, Janet; Sliter, Ray; Papesh, Antoinette

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Year Published: 2020

Seasonal variation in sediment delivery across the bay-marsh interface of an estuarine salt marsh

Sediment transport across bay–marsh interfaces depends on wave energy, vegetation, and marsh-edge morphology, and varies over a range of timescales. We investigated these dynamics in a tidal salt marsh with a gently-sloped, vegetated edge adjacent to northern San Francisco Bay. Spartina foliosa (cordgrass) inhabits the lower marsh and Salicornia...

Lacy, Jessica R.; Foster-Martinez, Madeline R.; Allen, Rachel (Contractor); Ferner, Matthew C.; Callaway, John C.