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California

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Filter Total Items: 361
Aerial view of the Mill Creek landslide blocking Highway 50.
Date Published: June 6, 2018
Status: Active

U.S. Highway 50, California

Real-time Data

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Eldorado National Forest, has installed monitoring instruments on the Cleveland Corral landslide that has the potential to affect Highway 50. Data from these instruments are used to detect changes in local conditions including

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Contacts: Mark Reid
A USGS employee setting up a solar panel on a hillside of Dunsmore Canyon where vegetation has begun to regrow
Date Published: June 6, 2018
Status: Active

2009 Station Fire, Dunsmore Canyon, Glendale, California

Recent Conditions

Instruments are used to monitor and detect changes in local conditions, including:

Landslide monitoring station with the San Gabriel mountains in the background, post wildfire with no vegetation
Date Published: June 6, 2018
Status: Active

2009 Station Fire, Arroyo Seco, Pasadena, California

Recent Conditions

Instruments are used to monitor and detect changes in local conditions, including:

Kate Scharer
Date Published: June 5, 2018
Status: Active

Post-Fire Flooding and Debris Flow

Fast-moving, highly destructive debris flows triggered by intense rainfall are one of the most dangerous post-fire hazards. The risk of floods and debris flows after fires increases due to vegetation loss and soil exposure. Cases of sudden and deadly debris flow are well documented along the western United States, particularly in ...

charred, bare trees on a mountain side
Date Published: June 5, 2018
Status: Active

Water Quality after a Wildfire

About half of the water supply in the southwestern United States is supplied by water from forests, which generally yield higher quality water than any other source. Approximately 80 percent of the freshwater resources in the U.S. originate on forested land, and more than 3,400 public drinking-water systems are located in watersheds containing national forest lands (USDA, 2006). More than 12...

View of beach from roof top, edge of roof in foreground, pier extending from beach out over water in center, park in background.
Date Published: June 1, 2018
Status: Active

Remote Sensing Coastal Change

We use remote-sensing technologies—such as aerial photography, satellite imagery, and lidar (laser-based surveying)—to measure coastal change along U.S. shorelines.

Image: Happy Cows in Happy Flowers
Date Published: May 23, 2018
Status: Active

Rangeland Ecosystem Services

The Rangeland Ecosystem Services research described below is conducted and managed under the USGS Applied Landscape Ecology and Remote Sensing project and partners.

Kona Coast and Hualalai volcano
Date Published: May 23, 2018
Status: Active

Applied Landscape Ecology and Remote Sensing

We focus on landscape studies of natural and working lands, in particular coastal and inland wetlands and rangelands. We quantify ecosystem benefits, find areas vulnerable to future change, and identify potential for climate mitigation and resilience. We conduct research by scaling field measurements to the regional, state and national scale with remote sensing, geospatial analysis, and...

Screenshot of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool with proposed treatment drawn on screen.
Date Published: May 10, 2018
Status: Active

Land Treatment Exploration Tool

The Land Treatment ExplorationTool provides a practical resource for managers who are planning restoration and rehabilitation actions on public lands. The tool generates a variety of spatial products while being user friendly for all levels of GIS expertise, even to those with little or no experience.

gravity map Mojave Desert
Date Published: May 8, 2018
Status: Active

Rare Earth Element Deposits in the Southeast Mojave Desert

In an effort to better understand domestic resource potential, the USGS is investigating the genetic relationship between rare earth element deposits at Mountain Pass, California and Music Valley (Pinto Mountains, California) and extend these studies across a 130-km long belt of alkaline Proterozoic rocks in the southeast Mojave Desert. Such a combined study would significantly improve our...

Contacts: David Ponce
Photo of Bird Bands in a Variety of Sizes and Types
Date Published: May 1, 2018
Status: Active

Bird Banding Laboratory

The Bird Banding Laboratory (BBL) is an integrated scientific program established in 1920 supporting the collection, archiving, management and dissemination of information from banded and marked birds in North America.  This information is used to monitor the status and trends of resident and migratory bird populations. Because birds are good indicators of the health of the environment, the...

Trona Wildrose Road in the Panamint Valley, California, along the section of the seismic reflection survey, looking west.
Date Published: April 30, 2018
Status: Completed

Untangling Faults at Depth – What Lies Beneath Panamint Valley, California?

Release Date: APRIL 30, 2018

The eastern edge of Panamint Valley,CA has two types of faults that can be seen in the near-surface geology. 150 geophones and a seismic source will help reveal the subsurface picture.

Filter Total Items: 315
USGS
January 1, 2017

This part of the data release presents a digital elevation model (DEM) created from bathymetry data collected on February 1, 2011, in the Sacramento River from the confluence of the Feather River to Knights Landing. The data were collected by the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center (PCMSC) team with collaboration and funding from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. This project used inte

USGS
January 1, 2017

Projected Hazard: Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
Model Summary: The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0

USGS
January 1, 2017

Investigations of coastal change and coastal resources often require continuous elevation profiles from the seafloor to coastal terrestrial landscapes. Differences in elevation data collection in the terrestrial and marine environments result in separate elevation products that may not share a vertical datum. This data release contains the assimilation of multiple elevation products into a contin

USGS
January 1, 2017

Model-derived total water levels (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0 for Southern California shows project

USGS
January 1, 2017

This part of DS 781 presents data for bathymetry for several seafloor maps of the Offshore of Point Conception Map Area, California. The vector data file is included in "Bathymetry_OffshorePointConception.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7QN64XQ. These data accompany the pamphlet and map sheets of Johnson, S.Y., Dartnell, P., Cochrane, G.R., Hartwell, S.R., Golden, N.E., Kv

USGS
January 1, 2017

Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0 for Southern California shows pr

USGS
January 1, 2017

Geographic extent of projected coastal flooding, low-lying vulnerable areas, and maxium/minimum flood potential (flood uncertainty) associated with the sea-level rise and storm condition indicated.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and

USGS
January 1, 2017

Projected Hazard: Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
Model Summary: The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0

USGS
January 1, 2017

Files contain hydrodynamic and sediment transport data for the location and deployment indicated. Time-series data of water depth, velocity, turbidity, and temperature were collected in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh as part of the San Francisco Bay Marsh Sediment Experiments. Several instruments were deployed in tidal creek, marsh, mudflat, and Bay locations, gathering data on water depth, v

USGS
January 1, 2017

Model-derived ocean current velocities (in meters per second) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0 for Southern Califor

USGS
January 1, 2017

Files contain hydrodynamic and sediment transport data for the location and deployment indicated. Time-series data of water depth, velocity, turbidity, and temperature were collected in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh as part of the San Francisco Bay Marsh Sediment Experiments. Several instruments were deployed in tidal creek, marsh, mudflat, and Bay locations, gathering data on water depth, v

USGS
January 1, 2017

Maximum depth of flooding surface (in cm) in the region landward of the present day shoreline that is inundated for the storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario indicated. Note: Duration datasets may have occasional gaps in open-coast sections.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-in

Filter Total Items: 312
Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 2004

Map showing coastal cliff retreat rates along the Big Sur coast, Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties, California

The average coastal cliff retreat rate along the Big Sur coast is 18 ? 6 cm/yr as measured over a 52-year time period. The erosion reference features measured as the cliff edge include the well-defined cliff edges common to marine terraces, slight breaks in the slope defining the upper edge of the active lower slope, and the road grade. Cliff...

Hapke, Cheryl J.; Green, Krystal R.
Map showing coastal cliff retreat rates along the Big Sur coast, Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties, California; 2004; SIM; 2853; Hapke, Cheryl J.; Green Krystal R.

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Year Published: 2004

Maps showing estimated sediment yield from coastal landslides and active slope distribution along the Big Sur coast, Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties, California

The 1982-83 and 1997-98 El Ni?os brought very high precipitation to California?s central coast; this precipitation resulted in raised groundwater levels, coastal flooding, and destabilized slopes throughout the region. Large landslides in the coastal mountains of Big Sur in Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties blocked sections of California State...

Hapke, Cheryl J.; Green, Krystal R.; Dallas, Kate
Maps showing estimated sediment yield from coastal landslides and active slope distribution along the Big Sur coast, Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties, California; 2004; SIM; 2852; Hapke, Cheryl J.; Green, Krystal R.; Dallas, Kate

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Year Published: 2004

Preliminary report on using imaging spectroscopy to map ultramafic rocks, serpentinites, and tremolite-actinolite-bearing rocks in California

Swayze, Gregg A.; Higgins, Chris T.; Clinkenbeard, John P.; Kokaly, Raymond F.; Clark, Roger N.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Sutley, Stephen J.
Preliminary report on using imaging spectroscopy to map ultramafic rocks, serpentinites, and tremolite-actinolite-bearing rocks in California; 2004; OFR; 2004-1304; Swayze, Gregg A.; Higgins, Chris T.; Clinkenbeard, John P.; Kokaly, Raymond F.; Clark, Roger N.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Sutley, Stephen J.

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Year Published: 2004

A USGS Study of Talc Deposits and Associated Amphibole Asbestos Within Mined Deposits of the Southern Death Valley Region, California

Van Gosen, Bradley S.; Lowers, Heather; Sutley, Stephen J.
A USGS Study of Talc Deposits and Associated Amphibole Asbestos Within Mined Deposits of the Southern Death Valley Region, California; 2004; OFR; 2004-1092; Van Gosen, Bradley S.; Lowers, Heather A.; Sutley, Stephen J.

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Year Published: 2004

Ecological and political issues surrounding decommissioning of offshore oil facilities in the Southern California Bight

To aid legislators, resource managers, and the general public, this paper summarizes and clarifies some of the issues and options that the federal government and the state of California face in decommissioning offshore oil and gas production platforms, particularly as these relate to platform ecology. Both local marine ecology and political...

Schroeder, Donna M.; Love, Milton S.

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Year Published: 2004

Reproductive status of western mosquitofish inhabiting selenium- contaminated waters in the Grassland Water District, Merced County, California

This study was implemented to determine if western mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis) populations in the Grassland Water District suffer from impaired reproduction because of seleniferous inflows of agricultural drainwater from the Grassland Bypass Project. During June to July 2001, laboratory trials with pregnant female fish collected from two...

Saiki, M.K.; Martin, B.A.; May, T.W.
Reproductive status of western mosquitofish inhabiting selenium- contaminated waters in the Grassland Water District, Merced County, California; 2004; Article; Journal; Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology; Saiki, M. K.; Martin, B. A.; May, T. W.

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Year Published: 2004

Summary of total mercury concentrations in fillets of selected sport fishes collected during 2000-2003 from Lake Natoma, Sacramento County, California

This report summarizes results of total mercury measurements in skinless fillets of sport fishes collected during August 2000, September?October 2002, and July 2003 from Lake Natoma, a small (8,760 acre-feet) afterbay for Folsom Dam on the lower American River. The primary objective of the study was to determine if mercury concentrations in...

Saiki, Michael K.; Slotton, Darrell G.; May, Thomas W.; Ayers, Shaun M.; Alpers, Charles N.
Summary of total mercury concentrations in fillets of selected sport fishes collected during 2000-2003 from Lake Natoma, Sacramento County, California; 2004; DS; 103; Saiki, Michael K.; Slotton, Darrell G.; May, Thomas W.; Ayers, Shaun M.; Alpers, Charles N.

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Year Published: 2003

Signatures of the seismic source in EMD-based characterization of the 1994 Northridge, California, earthquake recordings

In this article we use empirical mode decomposition (EMD) to characterize the 1994 Northridge, California, earthquake records and investigate the signatures carried over from the source rupture process. Comparison of the current study results with existing source inverse solutions that use traditional data processing suggests that the EMD-based...

Zhang, R.R.; Ma, S.; Hartzell, S.
Signatures of the seismic source in EMD-based characterization of the 1994 Northridge, California, earthquake recordings; 2003; Article; Journal; Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America; Zhang, R. R.; Ma, S.; Hartzell, S.

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Year Published: 2003

Site response, shallow shear-wave velocity, and wave propagation at the San Jose, California, dense seismic array

Ground-motion records from a 52-element dense seismic array near San Jose, California, are analyzed to obtain site response, shallow shear-wave velocity, and plane-wave propagation characteristics. The array, located on the eastern side of the Santa Clara Valley south of the San Francisco Bay, is sited over the Evergreen basin, a 7-km-deep...

Hartzell, S.; Carver, D.; Williams, R.A.; Harmsen, S.; Zerva, A.
Site response, shallow shear-wave velocity, and wave propagation at the San Jose, California, dense seismic array; 2003; Article; Journal; Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America; Hartzell, S.; Carver, D.; Williams, R. A.; Harmsen, S.; Zerva, A.

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Year Published: 2002

Distribution and transport of suspended particulate matter in Monterey Canyon, California

From August 1993 to August 1994, six moorings that measure current, temperature, salinity, and water clarity were deployed along the axis of Monterey Canyon to study the circulation and transport of water and suspended particulate matter through the canyon system. The moorings occupied three sites that are morphologically different: a narrow...

Xu, J. P.; Noble, M.; Eittreim, S.L.; Rosenfeld, L.K.; Schwing, F.B.; Pilskaln, C.H.
Distribution and transport of suspended particulate matter in Monterey Canyon, California; 2002; Article; Journal; Marine Geology; Xu, J. P.; Noble, M.; Eittreim, S. L.; Rosenfeld, L. K.; Schwing, F. B.; Pilskaln, C. H.

Filter Total Items: 1,144
Pilot Bob Van Wagenen and the Cessna 182R he flies when taking air photos for the USGS Remote Sensing Coastal Change Project
December 31, 2017

The pilot and plane used to take air photos for the USGS

Pilot Bob Van Wagenen and the Cessna 182R he flies when taking air photos for the USGS Remote Sensing Coastal Change Project.

USGS
December 31, 2017

Big Brown Bat (Eptesicus fuscus) Call

Bats produce a variety of vocalizations that are used for navigation, feeding, and social communication. Most vocalizations are pitched well above the range of human hearing and are referred to as ultrasonic. These calls are often known as echolocation calls since bats use the echoes produced when a sound bounces off a bug or a building to determine what is in the area. 

...
Map of Active Faults and Historic Earthquakes in California
December 31, 2017

California Seismicity

Map of historic seismicity, major faults, and paleoseismic summary of San Andreas Fault system.

Attribution: Earthquake Hazards
erry Hatcher with the system he designed to record the precise time and geographic location of each air photo Van Wagenen shoots
December 31, 2017

Scientist with the system he designed to record precise photo data

Gerry Hatcher with the system he designed to record the precise time and geographic location of each air photo Van Wagenen shoots.

Map shows a coastal city with an airport and how, during a large storm, ocean water would flood around city features.
December 31, 2017

CoSMoS projection for San Diego

Example of CoSMoS projected flooding extents for a 1.5 meter sea level rise in combination with possible 100 year return period coastal storms.

Satellite showing the burn scars from the Thomas fire in California
December 25, 2017

Southern California Wildfires Update

In the Landsat 8 image acquired on December 9, smoke is carried west by strong winds, which also continued to spread fire through the dry terrain, mountain passes, and canyons. The diagonal lines are an airplane contrail and its shadow cast on the ground. Landsat 8’s December 25 image reveals the burn scar and shows

...
December 15, 2017

Image of the Week - Southern California Wildfires, December 2017

The Thomas fire has burned more than 230,000 acres and continues to blaze across souther California. These images show some of the burn scar left behind.

At the USGS EROS Center, we study land change, operate the Landsat satellites, and maintain the longest, continuously acquired collection of images of the Earth's land surface.

USGS EROS Center (

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A woman facing the camera talks to two men with their backs to the camera.
December 9, 2017

USGS Open House discussions

Members of the PCMSC Marine Minerals Team, including physical science technician Kira Mizell (center), took turns describing the importance of seafloor minerals.

A man at right talks about and gestures at a rock on a table to another man who is squatting in front of the rock.
December 9, 2017

Talking about seafloor mineral deposits

Research geologist Jim Hein (right) gave a hands-on explanation of seafloor mineral deposits.

A woman kneeling on the floor helps a young girl try on tall adult-sized rubber boots, for fun.
December 9, 2017

Try these on for size

Li Erikson (right) helped a young visitor try on the tall boots needed for Alaskan coastal research.

A man at right talks with another man and woman about an image projected on a screen.
December 9, 2017

Drone discussion

The drone on the table helped map a giant Big Sur landslide that closed California’s Highway 1. Josh Logan (right) described the process to visitors.

Filter Total Items: 906
3D perspective view of the likelihood that each region of California will experience a magnitude 6.7 within 30 years
March 10, 2015

A new California earthquake forecast by the U.S. Geological Survey and partners revises scientific estimates for the chances of having large earthquakes over the next several decades. 

USGS
March 5, 2015

U.S. Geological Survey scientists who study trends in climate change will be presenting the results from new studies at a workshop held in Pacific Grove, Calif., March 8 – 11, 2015. 

USGS science for a changing world logo
February 19, 2015

MENLO PARK, Calif.— A paper published today in Science provides a case for increasing transparency and data collection to enable strategies for mitigating the effects of human-induced earthquakes caused by wastewater injection associated with oil and gas production in the United States.

2014 South Napa Earthquake in California
January 28, 2015

Channel 7 News

MENLO PARK, Calif. (KGO) -- 

Five months after the South Napa earthquake, scientists gathered on Wednesday at the U.S. Geological Survey to talk about what they're learning from it and what it means for the next big one here in the Bay Area.

A screenshot of the Walker Basin Hydro Mapper homepage shows current Walker River Basin conditions.
January 14, 2015

The newly released web-based Walker Basin Hydro Mapper aims to provide real-time visualization of streamflow, and waterbody stage and volume in the Walker River Basin.

Image: Steve Hickman Earthquake Science Center Director
January 12, 2015

The U.S. Geological Survey is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Stephen Hickman to serve as the new director of the USGS Earthquake Science Center, headquartered in Menlo Park, California.

USGS
December 18, 2014

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced today that Interior’s Southwest Climate Science Center is awarding nearly a million dollars to universities and other partners for research to guide managers of parks, refuges and other cultural and natural resources in planning how to help species and ecosystems adapt to climate change.

USGS
December 11, 2014

The U.S. Geological Survey is hosting three media availabilities on Friday, Dec. 12 at high-water areas on the Russian River near Geyserville, Calif.; the Sacramento River at Delta, Calif; and Cache Creek near Yolo, Calif. A hydrologist will be available for interviews as field crews collect data.

Historical photo of a flood on Willamette River in Oregon from 1964
December 11, 2014

The Christmas flood of 1964 encompassed about 200,000 square miles, or roughly the size of France, resulted in 47 deaths, left thousands homeless and caused more than $540 million ($3.9 billion today) worth of damage.

Map showing drought coverage of California
December 8, 2014

A newly released interactive California Drought visualization website aims to provide the public with atlas-like, state-wide coverage of the drought and a timeline of its impacts on water resources.

The Bumble Bee, Arizona US Topo map
December 4, 2014

As part of the continued US Topo maps revision and improvement cycle, the USGS will be including mountain bike trails to upcoming quadrangles on a state-aligned basis. 

Earthquake swarm near Lassen Volcanic Center Nov 6 to Nov 12, 2014...
November 12, 2014

CalVO is tracking an earthquake swarm that began on November 9 located at the Tehama County-Plumas County border within Lassen National Forest.