Natural Hazards


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Date published: January 17, 2020

As Aftershocks Continue in Puerto Rico, USGS Supports Quake Recovery

A sequence of earthquakes in southwest Puerto Rico continues to affect people living there, with the largest recent aftershock a magnitude 5.2 on Jan. 15. U.S. Geological Survey scientists on the island and the mainland are providing up-to-date scientific information to help the Commonwealth government and the Federal Emergency Management Agency make decisions that protect the public.

Date published: January 13, 2020

The complicated plumbing of hot springs and steam vents in Yellowstone National Park

Exploration and sampling of Yellowstone's thermal areas indicates that Yellowstone's hot springs often have surprisingly complex plumbing systems. It is not uncommon to find hot spring pools, which have one type of chemistry, and steam vents, which have totally different chemistry, located in close proximity—or even occupying the same space! Learn what happens when these mix or overlap.

Date published: January 11, 2020

Earthquake Scenarios for Puerto Rico

Earthquakes are unsettling, destructive, and often tragic to the communities they affect. The USGS works diligently to help keep people safer by providing them and their emergency responders the science needed to respond to ongoing hazards.

Last updated January 18, 4:32pm Pacific time, 2020.

Date published: January 11, 2020

Escenarios de terremotos en Puerto Rico

Los terremotos, como los ocurridos en Puerto Rico, pueden ser preocupantes, destructivos y en muchas ocasiones trágicos para las comunidades afectadas.

Última actualización el 18 de enero, 4:32 p.m., hora del Pacífico, 2020

Date published: January 7, 2020

Magnitude 6.4 Earthquake in Puerto Rico

Links to forecasts and scenerios (below) will continue to be updated, however, text in this story will not be updated unless there is significant change to the aftershock behavior or to the USGS response to the earthquake. 

7-day aftershock forecast [English]

30-day aftershock scenarios [English | Spanish]

Date published: January 6, 2020

Yellowstone—the year 2019 in review

Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles is a weekly column written by scientists and collaborators of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. This week's contribution is...

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.

Date published: December 31, 2019

Sound Waves Newsletter - October-December 2019

The USGS loses a dear friend, the challenges of conducting Arctic fieldwork, congressional briefing on coastal impacts and resiliency, the USGS at the St. Petersburg Science Festival, and more in this October-December 2019 issue of Sound Waves.

Date published: December 11, 2019

USGS provides update for the National Seismic Hazard Model

USGS experts recently released a study that incorporates the latest earthquake science findings into an update of the National Seismic Hazard Model for the “lower-48” United States.  Read the full report here:

Date published: December 9, 2019

In the Field with Kate Scharer

What’s a day in the life of a research geologist like?

Date published: December 5, 2019

Resilience along the West Coast

Briefing held on science and policy initiatives that are helping protect West Coast ecosystems and communities from erosion, sea level rise, and other coastal hazards.