St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center


Research programs have a primary focus of investigating processes related to coastal and marine environments and societal implications related to natural hazards, resource sustainability, and environmental change.



Read about our science projects, find out where we are working, and why it matters.

Science Themes



Peer-reviewed research results and conclusions, authored by Center scientists.

Publications List


Date published: October 15, 2021

National Hispanic American Heritage Month

National Hispanic American Heritage Month, September 15 through October 15, was established to recognize the achievements and contributions of Hispanic American champions who have inspired others to achieve success. In honor of this special month, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) celebrated our scientists and staff of Hispanic descent and highlighted how their heritage plays a role in their...

Date published: October 7, 2021

USGS Leadership Participates in Virtual NOMEC Conversation Hosted by the UN Decade on the Ocean

What do you know about NOMEC? And why is NOMEC important?

NOMEC is the National Ocean Mapping, Exploring and Characterization program, a national effort focused on mapping the United States Excusive Economic Zone or EEZ.

Date published: October 1, 2021

SPCMSC Researchers Invited to Present on Coastal Vulnerability Assessments Project in Puerto Rico to the Southeast & Caribbean Disaster Resilience Partnership

Coastal Change Hazards scientists Dr. Legna Torres-Garcia and Dr. Donya Frank-Gilchrist of the St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center (SPCMSC) were invited to present to the Southeast & Caribbean Disaster Resilience Partnership (SCDRP) on coastal vulnerability assessments in Puerto Rico through a focused stakeholder engagement approach.


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Year Published: 2021

Distinguishing between regression model fits to global mean sea level reconstructions

Global mean sea level (GMSL) has been rising since the last century, posing a serious challenge for the coastal areas. A variety of regression models have been utilized for determining GMSL rise over the past one hundred years, resulting in a large spread of sea level rise rates and multidecadal variations. In this study, we develop a new...

Zhu, Yingli; Mitchum, Gary T.; Doran, Kara S.; Chambers, Don P.; Liang, Xinfeng

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Year Published: 2021

Hotspot dune erosion on an intermediate beach

A large, low pressure Nor’easter storm and Hurricane Joaquin contributed to multiple weeks of sustained, elevated wave and water level conditions along the southeastern Atlantic coast of the United States in Fall 2015. Sea level anomalies in excess of 1 m and offshore wave heights of up to 4 m were recorded during these storms, as observed at the...

Cohn, Nicholas; Brodie, Katherine; Johnson, Bradley; Palmsten, Margaret Louise

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Year Published: 2021

Rigorously valuing the impact of projected coral reef degradation on coastal hazard risk in Florida

The degradation of coastal habitats, particularly coral reefs, raises risks by increasing the exposure of coastal communities to flooding hazards. In the United States, the physical protective services provided by coral reefs were recently assessed, in social and economic terms, with the annual protection provided by U.S. coral reefs off the coast...

Storlazzi, Curt D.; Reguero, Borja G.; Yates, Kimberly K.; Cumming, Kristen A.; Cole, Aaron D.; Shope, James B.; Gaido L., Camila; Zawada, David G.; Arsenault, Stephanie R.; Fehr, Zachery W.; Nickel, Barry A.; Beck, Michael W.
Storlazzi, C.D., Reguero, B.G., Yates, K.K., Cumming, K.A., Cole, A.D., Shope, J.B., Gaido L., C., Zawada, D.G., Arsenault, S.R., Fehr, Z.W., Nickel, B.A., and Beck, M.W., 2021, Rigorously valuing the impact of projected coral reef degradation on coastal hazard risk in Florida: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2021–1055, 27 p.,