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Science

The center’s staff of about 100 conducts scientific research throughout the United States and in international waters to describe and understand the processes shaping coastal ecosystems, such as dunes, beaches, salt marshes, and lakes, and marine ecosystems, like the continental shelf and the deep sea. 

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Coastal Ecosystem Science

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Capabilities

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Ocean/Marine Ecosystem Science

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Coastal Change

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Hazards

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Ocean Resources

FAQs

What is the role of the USGS in responding to hurricanes?

The USGS creates detailed maps of our Nation’s shorelines, dunes, and coastal cliffs, and studies how storm processes impact our coastlines. This information is used to predict and map coastal vulnerability to changes caused by major storms, long-term shoreline erosion, sea-level rise, and sea cliff erosion. One example is the USGS Total Water Level and Coastal Change Forecast Viewer, which uses...

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What is the role of the USGS in responding to hurricanes?

The USGS creates detailed maps of our Nation’s shorelines, dunes, and coastal cliffs, and studies how storm processes impact our coastlines. This information is used to predict and map coastal vulnerability to changes caused by major storms, long-term shoreline erosion, sea-level rise, and sea cliff erosion. One example is the USGS Total Water Level and Coastal Change Forecast Viewer, which uses...

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Why is elevation data so important to forecasting hurricane impact?

The fundamental lesson of Hurricane Sandy in 2012 (and prior catastrophic storms and hurricanes) was that storm vulnerability is first and foremost a consequence of elevation. The height at which infrastructure, resources, and communities sit in relation to average tides and water levels, storm waves, surge, and flood waters determines their exposure to overwhelmingly powerful damaging forces...

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Why is elevation data so important to forecasting hurricane impact?

The fundamental lesson of Hurricane Sandy in 2012 (and prior catastrophic storms and hurricanes) was that storm vulnerability is first and foremost a consequence of elevation. The height at which infrastructure, resources, and communities sit in relation to average tides and water levels, storm waves, surge, and flood waters determines their exposure to overwhelmingly powerful damaging forces...

Learn More