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Scientific reports, journal articles, and information products produced by USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center scientists.

Filter Total Items: 1281

Shifted sediment-transport regimes by climate change and amplified hydrological variability in cryosphere-fed rivers

Climate change affects cryosphere-fed rivers and alters seasonal sediment dynamics, affecting cyclical fluvial material supply and year-round water-food-energy provisions to downstream communities. Here, we demonstrate seasonal sediment-transport regime shifts from the 1960s to 2000s in four cryosphere-fed rivers characterized by glacial, nival, pluvial, and mixed regimes, respectively. Spring see
Tinghu Zhang, Dongfeng Li, Amy E. East, Albert J. Kettner, James L. Best, Jinren Ni, Xixi Lu

A watershed moment for western U.S. dams

The summer of 2023 is a notable time for water-resource management in the western United States: Glen Canyon Dam, on the Colorado River, turns 60 years old while the largest dam-removal project in history is beginning on the Klamath River. This commentary discusses these events in the context of a changing paradigm for dam and reservoir management in this region. Since the era of large dam buildin
Amy E. East, Gordon E. Grant

Where ice gave way to fire: Deglacial volcanic activity at the edge of the Coast Mountains in Milbanke Sound, BC

Kitasu Hill and MacGregor Cone formed along the Principe Laredo Fault on British Columbia’s central coast as the Wisconsinan ice sheet withdrew from the Coast Mountains. These small-volume Milbanke Sound Volcanoes (MSV) provide remarkable evidence for the intimate relationship between volcanic and glacial facies. The lavas are within-plate, differentiated (low MgO < 7%) Ocean Island Basalts, hawai
Tark S. Hamilton, Randolph J. Enkin, Zhengpeng Li, Jan M. Bednarski, Cooper D. Stacey, Mary McGann, Britta J.L. Jensen

Wide-area debris field and seabed characterization of a deep ocean dump site surveyed by autonomous underwater vehicles

Disposal of industrial and hazardous waste in the deep ocean was a pervasive global practice near coastlines in the 20th century. Uncertainty in the quantity, location, and contents of dumped materials at historical disposal sites underscores ongoing risks to marine ecosystems and human health. This study presents analysis of a 150-km2 wide-area sidescan sonar survey conducted in March 2021 with t
Sophia T. Merrifield, Sean Celona, Ryan A. McCarthy, Andrew Pietruszka, Heidi Batchelor, Robert Hess, Andrew Nager, Raymond Young, Kurt Sadorf, Lisa A. Levin, David L. Valentine, James E. Conrad, Eric J. Terrill

What evidence exists on the ecological and physical effects of built structures in shallow, tropical coral reefs? A systematic map protocol

BackgroundShallow, tropical coral reefs face compounding threats from habitat degradation due to coastal development and pollution, impacts from storms and sea-level rise, and pulse disturbances like blast fishing, mining, dredging, and ship groundings that reduce coral reefs’ height and variability. One approach toward restoring coral reef structure from these threats is deploying built structure
Avery Paxton, Tom Swannack, Candice Piercy, Safra Altman, Leanne Poussard, Brandon Puckett, Curt Storlazzi, T. Shay Viehman

Global projections of storm surges using high-resolution CMIP6 climate models

In the coming decades, coastal flooding will become more frequent due to sea-level rise and potential changes in storms. To produce global storm surge projections from 1950 to 2050, we force the Global Tide and Surge Model with a ∼25-km resolution climate model ensemble from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 High Resolution Model Intercomparison Project (HighResMIP). This is the fi
Sanne Muis, Jeroen C. J. H. Aerts, José A. Á. Antolínez, Job C. Dullaart, Trang Minh Duong, Li H. Erikson, Rein J. Haarsma, Maialen Irazoqui Apecechea, Matthias Mengel, Dewi Le Bars, Andrea C. O'Neill, Roshanka Ranasinghe, Malcolm J. Roberts, Martin Verlaan, Philip J. Ward, Kun Yan

California State waters map series—Benthic habitat characterization in the region offshore of Morro Bay, California

Coastal and Marine Ecological Classification Standard geoform, substrate, and biotic component geographic information system products were developed for the California State waters of south-central California in the region offshore of Morro Bay. The study was motivated by interest in development of offshore wind-energy capacity and infrastructure in Federal waters offshore. The Bureau of Ocean Ene
Guy R. Cochrane, Rikk Kvitek, Aaron Cole, Meghan Sherrier, Alia Roca-Lezra, Sean Hallahan, Peter Dartnell

Compound flood model for the lower Nooksack River and delta, western Washington—Assessment of vulnerability and nature-based adaptation opportunities to mitigate higher sea level and stream flooding

Higher sea level and stream runoff associated with climate change is expected to lead to greater lowland flooding across the Pacific Northwest. Increases in stream runoff that range from 20 to 32 percent by the 2040s and from 52 to 72 percent by the 2080s is expected to steadily increase flood risk. Flood risk is also expected to increase in response to the landward shift in high tides and storm s
Eric E. Grossman, Nathan R. vanArendonk, Kees Nederhoff

Evaluating a prospective fault-based stress-transfer forecast for the M7.9 Wenchuan earthquake region 15 years later

Four days after the 12 May 2008 M 7.9 Wenchuan earthquake struck the Sichuan region of China, we submitted a prospective earthquake forecast based on transfer of stress from the mainshock onto significant faults crossing through populated areas. We identified where the largest aftershocks were likely to occur that could cause loss of life. We returned the revised article to the journal on 5 June 2
Thomas E. Parsons, Chen Ji, Eric Kirby

Fluvial delivery and wave resuspension of sediment in a sheltered, urbanized Pacific Northwest estuary

The sequence and timing of sediment delivery and redistribution in coastal systems is important for shoreline stability, ecosystem services, and remediation planning. In temperate estuaries, understanding the role of fluvial sediment delivery and dispersal relative to wind and wave remobilization processes is particularly important to address the fate of contaminants, many of which adsorb to fine
Daniel J. Nowacki, Andrew W. Stevens, Renee K. Takesue, Eric E. Grossman

Nearshore subtidal community response during and after sediment disturbance associated with dam removal

Dam removal is used increasingly to restore aquatic ecosystems and remove unnecessary or high-risk infrastructure. As the number of removals increases, there is a growing understanding about the hydrologic, geomorphic, and ecological responses to these removals. Most dam removal studies, however, focus on river and watershed responses to dam removal. The removal of two dams on the Elwha River prov
Stephen P. Rubin, Melissa M. Foley, Ian M. Miller, Andrew W. Stevens, Jonathan Warrick, Helen D. Berry, Nancy E. Elder, Matthew M. Beirne, Guy Gelfenbaum

Spatial distribution and variability of lobe facies in a large sand-rich submarine fan system: Neoproterozoic Zerrissene Group, Namibia

The deposits of the upper Neoproterozoic Zerrissene Group of central-western Namibia represent a large siliciclastic deep-water depositional system that showcases the intricacies of facies and architectural relationships from bed-scale to fan-system-scale. The lack of vegetation in the Namib Desert and regular east–west repetition of folded stratigraphy (reflecting ca 50% tectonic shortening) prov
Nora Maria Nieminski, Tim McHargue, Jared T. Gooley, Andrea Fildani, Donald R Lowe