Coastal and Marine Hazards and Resources Program


Coastal and Marine Hazards and Resources Program scientists and staff study coastal and ocean resources and processes from shorelines and estuaries to the continental shelf and deep sea. Visit our Science Center web sites: Santa Cruz, CaliforniaSt. Petersburg, Florida; and Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

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Date published: October 27, 2020

Zeta’s Strong Waves Will Cause Coastal Change Along the Gulf Coast

A new U.S. Geological Survey coastal change forecast predicts sandy beaches in Louisiana and Mississippi may be heavily damaged by Zeta, which is expected to make landfall Oct. 28 as a hurricane. Sandy beaches in Texas, Alabama and Florida may see moderate to minor damage.

Date published: October 15, 2020

Coastal Change Hazards Team Forecasted Hurricane Delta Beach Impacts

As Hurricane Delta approached the US Gulf Coast, the USGS Coastal Change Hazards Team produced a series of forecasts for impacts on the beach. The model forecasts the probability of collision, overwash and inundation (pCOI) along the beach. Forecasts were updated daily based on wave and storm surge forecasts from NOAA.

Date published: October 9, 2020

USGS: Delta will erode parts of Louisiana, Texas coasts

Editor’s note: This story updates and replaces a story published October 8, reflecting a new forecast that reduces the extent of Hurricane Delta’s impacts on central Gulf Coast sandy shorelines. 

To learn more about USGS’s role in providing science to decision makers before, during and after Hurricane Delta, visit   


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Year Published: 2020

Increasing threat of coastal groundwater hazards from sea-level rise in California

Projected sea-level rise will raise coastal water tables, resulting in groundwater hazards that threaten shallow infrastructure and coastal ecosystem resilience. Here we model a range of sea-level rise scenarios to assess the responses of water tables across the diverse topography and climates of the California coast. With 1 m of sea-level rise,...

Befus, K.M.; Barnard, Patrick L.; Hoover, Daniel J.; Finzi Hart, Juliette; Voss, Clifford I.

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Year Published: 2020

Distribution of earthquakes on a branching fault system using integer programming and greedy sequential methods

A new global optimization method is used to determine the distribution of earthquakes on a complex, connected fault system. The method, integer programming, has been advanced in the field of operations research, but has not been widely applied to geophysical problems until recently. In this application, we determine the optimal distribution of...

Geist, Eric L.; Parsons, Thomas E.

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Year Published: 2020

The predictive skills of elastic Coulomb rate-and-state aftershock forecasts during the 2019 Ridgecrest, California, earthquake sequence

Operational earthquake forecasting protocols commonly use statistical models for their recognized ease of implementation and robustness in describing the short-term spatiotemporal patterns of triggered seismicity. However, recent advances on physics-based aftershock forecasting reveal comparable performance to the standard statistical counterparts...

Mancini, Simone; Segou, Margarita; Werner, Maximillian J; Parsons, Thomas E.