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Alaska Region

USGS in Alaska conducts science for decision-making in five major areas: natural hazards; energy & minerals; water quality, streamflow & ice; wildlife, fish & habitat; and geospatial mapping. The Alaska Regional Office provides management and strategic coordination among the Alaska Science Center, the Volcano Science Center, & other partners operating in AK.

News

Revisiting the 1957 Aleutian Earthquake: New Insights into Tsunami Hazards for Hawaiʻi

Revisiting the 1957 Aleutian Earthquake: New Insights into Tsunami Hazards for Hawaiʻi

USGS makes $4.25 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds available for critical mineral mapping in Alaska

USGS makes $4.25 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds available for critical mineral mapping in Alaska

USGS Releases Estimate of Conventional Oil and Gas Resources in North Chukchi Basin

USGS Releases Estimate of Conventional Oil and Gas Resources in North Chukchi Basin

Publications

Accelerating glacier volume loss on Juneau Icefield driven by hypsometry and melt-accelerating feedbacks

Globally, glaciers and icefields contribute significantly to sea level rise. Here we show that ice loss from Juneau Icefield, a plateau icefield in Alaska, accelerated after 2005 AD. Rates of area shrinkage were 5 times faster from 2015–2019 than from 1979–1990. Glacier volume loss remained fairly consistent (0.65–1.01 km3 a−1) from 1770–1979 AD, rising to 3.08–3.72 km3 a−1 from 1979–2010, and the
Authors
Bethan Davies, Robert McNabb, Jacob Bendle, Jonathan Carrivick, Jeremy Ely, Tom Holt, Bradley Markle, Christopher J. McNeil, Lindsey Nicholson, Mauri Pelto

Boulders modulate hillslope-channel coupling in the northern Alaska Range

Active orogens balance tectonic rock uplift with erosion, commonly via river incision coupled to landslide denudation of “threshold” hillslopes, but sediment’s role in this feedback is unclear. We report fluvial geometry, and sediment size, prevalence, and mobility across two ≤600-m-tall gneissic northern Alaska Range anticlines that sustain steep landslide-clad hillslopes but differ 10× in late P
Authors
Adrian Bender, Richard O. Lease

Stratigraphy, paleoflora, and tectonic setting of the Paleogene Sheep Creek volcanic field, central Alaska

In this paper, we provide new information on the stratigraphy and paleoflora of the Sheep Creek volcanic field in the Alaska Range that bolsters our understanding of a key interval in the tectonic, paleoclimate, and paleoenvironmental history of the northern Cordillera. Although the distribution and basic stratigraphy of these rocks have been previously reported, here we document the stratigraphic
Authors
Timothy White, David Sunderlin, Dwight Bradley

Science

Seabirds and Forage Fish Ecology

Alaska's coastal and offshore waters provide foraging habitat for an estimated 100 million birds comprising more than 90 different species; from loons and seaducks that nest inland, to petrels and puffins that breed on islands off shore. All these birds depend on the sea to provide a wide variety of food types— from clams, crabs and urchins nearshore— to krill, forage fish, and squid offshore. The...
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Seabirds and Forage Fish Ecology

Alaska's coastal and offshore waters provide foraging habitat for an estimated 100 million birds comprising more than 90 different species; from loons and seaducks that nest inland, to petrels and puffins that breed on islands off shore. All these birds depend on the sea to provide a wide variety of food types— from clams, crabs and urchins nearshore— to krill, forage fish, and squid offshore. The...
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Cook Inlet Seabird and Forage Fish Study

A massive die-off of Common Murres was documented in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) during the fall and winter of 2015-2016 in association with a record-breaking marine heat wave in the GOA.
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Cook Inlet Seabird and Forage Fish Study

A massive die-off of Common Murres was documented in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) during the fall and winter of 2015-2016 in association with a record-breaking marine heat wave in the GOA.
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Seabird Die-offs in Alaska

Beginning in 2015, large numbers of dead seabirds have been appearing on beaches in most marine areas of Alaska. Although seabird die-offs are known to occur sporadically (e.g. 1970, 1989, 1993, 1997/1998, and 2004) in Alaska, these recent die-offs have been distinguished from past events by their increased frequency, duration, geographic extent, and number of different species involved.
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Seabird Die-offs in Alaska

Beginning in 2015, large numbers of dead seabirds have been appearing on beaches in most marine areas of Alaska. Although seabird die-offs are known to occur sporadically (e.g. 1970, 1989, 1993, 1997/1998, and 2004) in Alaska, these recent die-offs have been distinguished from past events by their increased frequency, duration, geographic extent, and number of different species involved.
Learn More