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Publications

Browse more than 160,000 publications authored by our scientists over the past 100+ year history of the USGS.  Publications available are: USGS-authored journal articles, series reports, book chapters, other government publications, and more.

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Modeling the dynamics of lahars that originate as landslides on the west side of Mount Rainier, Washington

Large lahars pose substantial threats to people and property downstream from Mount Rainier volcano in Washington State. Geologic evidence indicates that these threats exist even during the absence of volcanic activity and that the threats are highest in the densely populated Puyallup and Nisqually River valleys on the west side of the volcano. However, the precise character of these threats can be

Ungulate migration in a changing climate—An initial assessment of climate impacts, management priorities, and science needs

Executive SummaryMigratory behavior among ungulates in the Western United States occurs in response to changing forage quality and quantity, weather patterns, and predation risk. As snow melts and vegetation green-up begins in late spring and early summer, many migratory ungulates leave their winter range and move to higher elevation summer ranges to access high-quality forage and areas with veget

Yellowstone Volcano Observatory 2021 annual report

The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) monitors volcanic and hydrothermal activity associated with the Yellowstone magmatic system, carries out research into magmatic processes occurring beneath Yellowstone Caldera, and issues timely warnings and guidance related to potential future geologic hazards. This report summarizes the activities and findings of YVO during the year 2021, focusing on the

The Volcano Hazards Program — Strategic science plan for 2022–2026

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Volcano Hazards Program (VHP) Strategic Science Plan, developed through discussion with scientists-in-charge of the USGS volcano observatories and the director of the USGS Volcano Science Center, specifies six major strategic goals to be pursued over the next 5 years. The purpose of these goals is to help fulfill the USGS VHP mission to enhance public safety and t

Barkley Canyon gas hydrates: A synthesis based on two decades of seafloor observation and remote sensing

Barkley Canyon is one of the few known sites worldwide with the occurrence of thermogenic gas seepage and formation of structure-II and structure-H gas hydrate mounds on the seafloor. This site is the location of continuous seafloor monitoring as part of the Ocean Networks Canada (ONC) cabled observatory off the west coast off Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. We combine repeat remotely

Protocols for collecting and processing macroinvertebrates from the benthos and water column in depressional wetlands

Freshwater aquatic macroinvertebrates are key links in food webs and nutrient cycles, and thus often serve as biological indicators of ecosystem health. Macroinvertebrate investigations in research and monitoring require consistent and reliable field and laboratory procedures. Comprehensive standard operating procedures for sampling macroinvertebrates from depressional wetlands, which can range fr

Utah and Landsat

Utah’s list of notable features runs long, but scenery rises to the top. The Colorado River does not simply run through southeastern Utah; it meanders through steep canyons of the eroded sedimentary rock that colors the sweeping vistas of the Colorado Plateau. Stone arches, spires, hoodoos, cliffs, and bridges in hues of red enchant residents and tourists. Mountain ranges extending through the Sta

Hydraulics of freshwater mussel habitat in select reaches of the Big River, Missouri

The Big River is a tributary to the Meramec River in south-central Missouri. It drains an area that has been historically one of the largest lead producers in the world, and associated mine wastes have contaminated sediments in much of the river corridor. This study investigated hydraulic conditions in four study reaches to evaluate the potential contribution of physical habitat dynamics to mechan

Susceptibility of beavers to chronic wasting disease

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is a contagious, fatal, neurodegenerative prion disease of cervids. The expanding geographical range and rising prevalence of CWD are increasing the risk of pathogen transfer and spillover of CWD to non-cervid sympatric species. As beavers have close contact with environmental and food sources of CWD infectivity, we hypothesized that they may be susceptible to CWD pri

Detection and characterization of coastal tidal wetland change in the northeastern US using Landsat time series

Coastal tidal wetlands are highly altered ecosystems exposed to substantial risk due to widespread and frequent land-use change coupled with sea-level rise, leading to disrupted hydrologic and ecologic functions and ultimately, significant reduction in climate resiliency. Knowing where and when the changes have occurred, and the nature of those changes, is important for coastal communities and nat

Assessment of well yield, dominant fractures, and groundwater recharge in Wake County, North Carolina

A cooperative study led by the U.S. Geological Survey and Wake County Environmental Services was initiated to characterize the fractured-rock aquifer system and assess the sustainability of groundwater resources in and around Wake County. This report contributes to the development of a comprehensive groundwater budget for the study area, thereby helping to enable resource managers to make sound an

Rock-to-metal ratio: A foundational metric for understanding mine wastes

The quantity of ore mined and waste rock (i.e., overburden or barren rock) removed to produce a refined unit of a mineral commodity, its rock-to-metal ratio (RMR), is an important metric for understanding mine wastes and environmental burdens. In this analysis, we provide a comprehensive examination of RMRs for 25 commodities for 2018. The results indicate significant variability across commoditie