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

Filter Total Items: 1146

Measuring and attributing sedimentary and geomorphic responses to modern climate change: Challenges and opportunities

Today, climate change is affecting virtually all terrestrial and nearshore settings. This commentary discusses the challenges of measuring climate-driven physical landscape responses to modern global warming: short and incomplete data records, land use and seismicity masking climatic effects, biases in data availability and resolution, and signal attenuation in sedimentary systems. We identify opp

Pharmaceuticals and personal care products in passive samplers at seven coastal sites off West Maui, Hawaiʻi:

Passive membrane samplers—semipermeable membrane devices and polar organic chemical integrative samplers—were deployed for 22 continuous days at 7 sites along the West Maui, Hawaiʻi, coastline in February and March 2017 to assess organic contaminants at shallow coral reef ecosystems from diverse upstream inputs. The distribution of organic compounds observed at these coastal sites showed considera

Categorizing active marine acoustic sources based on their potential to affect marine animals

Marine acoustic sources are widely used for geophysical imaging, oceanographic sensing, and communicating with and tracking objects or robotic vehicles in the water column. Under the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act and similar regulations in several other countries, the impact of controlled acoustic sources is assessed based on whether the sound levels received by marine mammals meet the criteri

Element concentrations and grain size of sediment from the Similkameen River above Enloe Dam (Enloe Reservoir) near Oroville, Washington, 2019

In 2019, the U.S. Geological Survey conducted a reconnaissance survey of concentrations of 41 trace elements present in bed sediment in the reservoir on the Similkameen River upstream from Enloe Dam, near Oroville, Washington. The Similkameen River drains a watershed containing highly mineralized geologic deposits with current (2019) and historical mining activity. Results of this survey indicated

Reproducibility and variability of earthquake subsidence estimates from saltmarshes of a Cascadia estuary

We examine fossil foraminiferal assemblages from 20 sediment cores to assess sudden relative sea-level (RSL) changes across three mud-over-peat contacts at three salt marshes in northern Humboldt Bay, California (~44.8°N, -124.2°W). We use a validated foraminiferal-based Bayesian transfer function to evaluate the variability of subsidence stratigraphy at a range of 30-6000 m across an estuary. We

Crowd-sourced SfM: Best practices for high resolution monitoring of coastal cliffs and bluffs

Structure from motion (SfM) photogrammetry is an increasingly common technique for measuring landscape change over time by deriving 3D point clouds and surface models from overlapping photographs. Traditional change detection approaches require photos that are geotagged with a differential GPS (DGPS) location, which requires expensive equipment that can limit the ability of communities and researc

Crustal permeability changes observed from seismic attenuation: Impacts on multi-mainshock sequences

We use amplitude ratios from narrowband-filtered earthquake seismograms to measure variations of seismic attenuation over time, providing unique insights into the dynamic state of stress in the Earth’s crust at depth. Our dataset from earthquakes of the 2016-2017 Central Apennines sequence allows us to obtain high-resolution time histories of seismic attenuation (frequency band: 0.5-30 Hz) charact

Marine minerals in Alaska — A review of coastal and deep-ocean regions

Minerals occurring in marine environments span the globe and encompass a broad range of mineral categories, forming within varied geologic and oceanographic settings. They occur in coastal regions, either from the continuation or mechanical reworking of terrestrial mineralization, as well as in the deep ocean, from diagenetic, hydrogenetic, and hydrothermal processes. The oceans cover most of the

Impact of climate change on mollusks and other invertebrate resources at the Dominican University of California archaeological site (CA-MRN-254), Marin County, California

We have identified and provided ecological interpretations of 30 taxa recovered at two shellmounds at the Dominican University of California archaeology site in Marin County, California (CA-MRN-254). A Q-mode cluster analysis was used to group the samples according to their faunal similarity. The clusters ranged from a diverse grouping of 100 samples with 27 taxa (Cluster A) to those with a more r

Revisiting the 1899 earthquake series using integrative geophysical analysis in Yakutat Bay, Alaska

A series of large earthquakes in 1899 affected southeastern Alaska near Yakutat and Disenchantment Bays. The largest of the series, a MW 8.2 event on 10 September 1899, generated an ~12-m-high tsunami and as much as 14.4 m of coseismic uplift in Yakutat Bay, the largest coseismic uplift ever measured. Several complex fault systems in the area are associated with the Yakutat terrane collision with

Continental shelves as detrital mixers: U-Pb and Lu-Hf detrital zircon provenance of the Pleistocene–Holocene Bering Sea and its margins

Continental shelves serve as critical transfer zones in sediment-routing systems, linking the terrestrial erosional and deep-water depositional domains. The degree to which clastic sediment is mixed and homogenized during transfer across broad shelves has important implications for understanding deep-sea detrital records. Wide continental shelves are thought to act as capacitors characterized by t

A numerical study of geomorphic and oceanographic controls on wave-driven runup on fringing reefs with shore-normal channels

Many populated, tropical coastlines fronted by fringing coral reefs are exposed to wave-driven marine flooding that is exacerbated by sea-level rise. Most fringing coral reef are not alongshore uniform, but bisected by shore-normal channels; however, little is known about the influence of such channels on alongshore variations on runup and flooding of the adjacent coastline. We con-ducted a parame