Unified Interior Regions

California

The Southwest Region includes California, Nevada, and Arizona. The Regional Office, headquartered in Sacramento, provides Center oversight and support, facilitates internal and external collaborations, and works to further USGS strategic science directions.

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 375
Date published: June 1, 2020
Status: Active

Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS)

The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions of storm-induced coastal flooding, erosion, and cliff failures over large geographic scales. CoSMoS was developed for hindcast studies, operational applications and future climate scenarios to provide emergency responders and coastal planners with critical storm-hazards information that can be used to increase public safety...

Date published: May 29, 2020
Status: Completed

The Blind Zone of Earthquake Early Warning

Residents in California, Oregon, and Washington have been told that earthquake early warning (EEW) is at their doorstep and will alert them to the shaking from an earthquake before it arrives. Some media reports have said there will be “up to a minute of warning”. The problem is, for onshore earthquakes these claims are exaggerated, and under some conditions a warning is not scientifically or...

Date published: May 8, 2020
Status: Active

Nutrient Source Identification in Groundwater and Periphyton Along the Nearshore of Lake Tahoe

High concentrations of phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N) are responsible for excessive, or nuisance algal blooms in many ecosystems world-wide, and climate change is predicted to exacerbate the problem1,2. Excessive nutrients supplied to the nearshore zone of Lake Tahoe may have significant consequences to ecological communities, water clarity, and water quality. The nearshore zone...

Contacts: Ramon C Naranjo
Date published: May 1, 2020
Status: Active

Seafloor Faults off Southern California

More than 22 million people live along Southern California’s coast, and many more migrate there every year. Faults and earthquake threats in this region have been heavily studied on land. USGS aims to boost our knowledge about faults on the seafloor, so they can be included in hazard assessments.

Contacts: Danny Brothers
Date published: May 1, 2020
Status: Active

Offshore Faults along Central and Northern California

From Point Conception to Cape Mendocino, seafloor faults have been, in the past, mapped in varying ways and without enough detail to assess their earthquake potential. To provide this important information, USGS uses advanced technology to image offshore faults that could trigger devastating earthquakes near densely populated areas and a nuclear power plant.

Contacts: Janet Watt
Date published: April 29, 2020
Status: Active

LCMAP Change Stories: Building a Boomtown, Block by Block

The desert outpost of Palm Springs, California and the surrounding Thousand Palms region has experienced explosive population growth over the past four decades, with tract after tract of development filling in previously barren landscapes along Interstate 10.

Date published: April 17, 2020
Status: Active

The Response of Coastal Wetlands to Sea-level Rise: Understanding how Macroscale Drivers Influence Local Processes and Feedbacks

The purpose of this work is to advance our understanding of how coastal wetland responses to sea-level rise (SLR) within the conterminous United States are likely to vary as a function of local, regional, and macroscale drivers, including climate. Based on our interactions with managers and decision makers, as well as our knowledge of the current state of the science, we propose to: (a)...

Date published: April 8, 2020
Status: Active

Evaluation of Groundwater Resources in the Adelaida Area of San Luis Obispo County, California

Stakeholders in San Luis Obispo County are concerned that the increased demand for water use has, and will continue to, affect groundwater levels and availability in the Adelaida area. To address stakeholder concerns, the County of San Luis Obispo Board of Supervisors has asked the USGS to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of groundwater resources of the Adelaida area. 

Date published: March 2, 2020
Status: Active

Using Video Imagery to Study Coastal Change: Sunset State Beach

Two video cameras overlook the coast at Sunset State Beach in Watsonville, California. Camera 1 looks northwest while Camera 2 looks north. The cameras are part of the Remote Sensing Coastal Change project.

Date published: February 24, 2020
Status: Active

Science Seminar Series

Upcoming public seminars at the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center in Santa Cruz, California will be listed here. Get directions to our Center.
Also, check out our archive of past seminars.

Date published: February 18, 2020
Status: Active

Evaluation of groundwater resources of the Anza-Terwilliger area, Anza, California

Groundwater is the sole source for water use to the rural community and two Native American tribes in the Cahuilla Valley and Terwilliger Valley groundwater basins, which are located approximately 35 miles southwest of Palm Springs, California. The characteristics and sustainable yield of the basins are not well understood and are threatened by increasing water use and potential changes in...

Date published: February 7, 2020
Status: Active

Using Video Imagery to Study Coastal Change: Santa Cruz Beaches

Two video cameras atop the Dream Inn hotel in Santa Cruz, California, overlook the coast in northern Monterey Bay. One camera looks eastward over Santa Cruz Main Beach and boardwalk, while the other looks southward over Cowells Beach. The cameras are part of the Remote Sensing Coastal Change project.

Filter Total Items: 486
Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood-hazard projections: 1-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains geographic extents of projected coastal flooding, low-lying vulnerable areas, and maximum/minimum flood potential (flood uncertainty) associated with the sea-level rise (SLR) and storm condition indicated.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-ind

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood-hazard projections: average conditions in Santa Cruz County

This data contains geographic extents of projected coastal flooding, low-lying vulnerable areas, and maximum/minimum flood potential (flood uncertainty) associated with the sea-level rise (SLR) and storm condition indicated.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-ind

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 ocean-currents projections: 1-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum model-derived ocean currents (in meters per second) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scen

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood depth and duration projections: average conditions in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum depth of flooding (cm) in the region landward of the present-day shoreline for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-le

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood depth and duration projections: 20-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum depth of flooding (cm) in the region landward of the present-day shoreline for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-le

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 water-level projections: 20-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains model-derived total water levels (in meters) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. Projecti

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood-hazard projections: 20-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains geographic extents of projected coastal flooding, low-lying vulnerable areas, and maximum/minimum flood potential (flood uncertainty) associated with the sea-level rise (SLR) and storm condition indicated.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-ind

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 wave-hazard projections: average conditions in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scenar

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 water-level projections: 100-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains model-derived total water levels (in meters) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. Projecti

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 flood depth and duration projections: 100-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum depth of flooding (cm) in the region landward of the present-day shoreline for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-le

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 wave-hazard projections: 20-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scenar

Date published: May 4, 2020

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Central California v3.1 wave-hazard projections: 1-year storm in Santa Cruz County

This data contains maximum model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the sea-level rise (SLR) 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 future sea-level rise (SLR) scenar

Filter Total Items: 32
Screenshot of the Borrego Valley groundwater quality data map
January 30, 2019

The quality of groundwater in the Borrego Valley is a concern because it is the sole source of water for agricultural, recreational, and public supply. Explore this interactive water-quality data map for detailed information and to download data.

screenshot of interactive data map displaying  USGS wells in the San Antonio Creek groundwater basin
December 18, 2018

In order to understand the integrated hydrologic systems in the San Antonio Creek Valley, many different types of data are being gathered from both the surface water and groundwater system. Learn about these data types and explore them with the interactive map.

screenshot of interactive map displaying groundwater, water quality, streamgage, and microgravity sites
December 10, 2018

The Lower Colorado Monitoring Network is a series of groundwater-level and water-quality wells, as well as streamgages and micro-gravity sites. This interactive map displays the sites and provides links to the most current data.

Map of California with areas of subsidence shaded by cause
December 7, 2018

In California, land subsidence—mostly from groundwater pumping—was first documented by the USGS in the early 20th century. Completion of State and Federal water projects that bring water from California's wet north to its dry south allowed some groundwater aquifers to recover, and subsidence decreased in these areas. Subsidence continues today, sometimes at high rates of more than 1 foot/year.

screenshot of the user interface
November 13, 2018

This interactive webmap plots water-quality data from domestic and public-supply wells sampled by the USGS for the California Groundwater Ambient Monitoring and Assessment (GAMA) Program Priority Basin Project (GAMA-PBP), and allows users to download datasets. The GAMA-PBP is a cooperative program between the California State Water Resources Control Board and the U.S. Geological Survey. 

screenshot of an interactive map of groundwater data in the Mojave region.  Well sites and water-level contours are displayed.
November 7, 2018

Interactive map of the Mojave and Morongo groundwater basins.  Data layers include sites and data for groundwater levels, water quality, and land subsidence.  Groundwater data spans 1994 to the present.

Map displaying areas in California where the USGS has built groundwater models
August 30, 2018

The USGS models shown on this site are in the public domain, and are freely available. They are based on MODFLOW and other public-domain USGS software. Links to publications and web resources associated with each model are shown in the table next to the model map. The associated model files for some of these models are currently available via download.

Thumbnail image of the cover of USGS Fact Sheet 2016-3020
April 16, 2018

Using information from recent earthquakes, improved mapping of active faults, and a new model for estimating earthquake probabilities, the 2014 Working Group on California Earthquake Probabilities updated the 30-year earthquake forecast for California. They concluded that there is a 72 percent probability (or likelihood) of at least one earthquake of magnitude 6.7 or greater striking somewhere in

 location of and evidence for recent movement on active fault traces within the Hayward Fault Zone, California
April 11, 2018

This map shows the location of and evidence for recent movement on active fault traces within the Hayward Fault Zone, California.

Shake map for At511 Scenario
April 11, 2018

The maps in this archive display estimated intensities and ground motions for the largest earthquakes in the HayWired aftershock sequence. The aftershock sequence follows the HayWired M7.0 mainshock that is imagined to occur on April 18, 2018 along the Hayward Fault.These maps have been used in analyses of the HayWired scenario.

Interactive map showing earthquake scenario data
April 11, 2018

The HayWired scenario depicts a hypothetical M7.0 earthquake on California’s Hayward Fault. This site includes an interactive map showing fault traces and ShakeMap contours, information on the tectonic setting of the Hayward Fault and fault rupture history; and a USGS ShakeMap, which provides ground motion information for the HayWired scenario mainshock.

screen shot of home page of story map
March 23, 2018

What might it be like the next time the Hayward Fault has a large earthquake? A geonarrative and related imagery examines a hypothetical earthquake, the magnitude 7.0 HayWired earthquake scenario.

Filter Total Items: 344
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Year Published: 2019

κ0 and broadband site spectra in Southern California from source model-constrained inversion

Ground-motion modeling requires accurate representation of the earthquake source, path, and site. Site amplification is often modeled by VS30, the time-averaged shear-wave velocity of the top 30 meters of the Earth’s surface, though recent studies find that its ability to accurately predict site effects varies. Another measure of the site is κ0,...

Klimasewski, Alexis; Sahakian, Valerie J.; Baltay, Annemarie S.; Boatwright, John; Fletcher, Jon Peter; Baker, Lawrence

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Year Published: 2019

Santa Rosa's past and future earthquakes

Santa Rosa is no stranger to earthquakes. This northern California city was damaged several times in the late 19th and early 20th centuries by shaking from earthquakes, culminating in the devastating earthquake of 1906, whose rupture passed 20 miles to the west of the city on the San Andreas Fault. Then in 1969, Santa Rosa was again strongly...

Hecker, Suzanne; McPhee, Darcy K.; Langenheim, Victoria E.; Watt, Janet T.
Hecker, S., McPhee, D.K., Langenheim, V.E., and Watt, J.T., 2019, Santa Rosa's past and future earthquakes: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2019–3035, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20193035.

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Year Published: 2019

Offshore shallow structure and sediment distribution, Punta Gorda to Point Arena, Northern California

This publication consists of two map sheets that display shallow geologic structure, along with sediment distribution and thickness, for an approximately 150-km-long offshore section of the northern California coast between Punta Gorda and Point Arena. Each map sheet includes three maps at scales of either 1:100,000 or 1:200,000, and together the...

Beeson, Jeffrey W.; Johnson, Samuel Y.
Beeson, J.W., and Johnson, S.Y., 2019, Offshore shallow structure and sediment distribution, Punta Gorda to Point Arena, northern California: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2019–1072, 2 sheets, scales 1:100,000 and 1:200,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20191072.

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Year Published: 2019

Airborne radiometric maps of Mountain Pass, California

Geophysical investigations of Mountain Pass and vicinity were begun as part of an effort to study regional crustal structures as an aid to understanding the geologic framework and mineral resources of the eastern Mojave Desert. The study area encompasses Mountain Pass, host to one of the world’s largest rare earth element carbonatite deposits. The...

Ponce, David A.; Ponce, David A.; Denton, Kevin M.
Ponce, D.A., and Denton, K.M. (D.A. Ponce, ed.), 2019, Airborne radiometric maps of Mountain Pass, California: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3412–C, scale 1:62,500, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3412C.

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Year Published: 2019

Occurrence and sources of radium in groundwater associated with oil fields in the southern San Joaquin Valley, California

Geochemical data from 40 water wells were used to examine the occurrence and sources of radium (Ra) in groundwater associated with three oil fields in California (Fruitvale, Lost Hills, South Belridge). 226Ra+228Ra activities (range=0.010-0.51 Bq/L) exceeded the 0.185 Bq/L drinking-water standard in 18% of the wells (not drinking-water wells)....

McMahon, Peter B.; Avner Vengosh; Davis, Tracy; Landon, Matthew K.; Rebecca L. Tyne; Wright, Michael; Kulongoski, Justin T.; Hunt, Andrew G.; Peter H. Barry; A.J. Kondash; Z. Wang; Christopher J. Ballentine
McMahon, P.B., A. Vengosh, T.A. Davis, M.K. Landon, R.L. Tyne, M.T. Wright, J.T. Kulongoski, A.G. Hunt, P.H. Barry, A.J. Kondash, Z. Wang, C.J. Ballentine, 2019. Occurrence and sources of radium in groundwater associated with oil fields in the southern San Joaquin Valley, California. Environmental Science & Technology, 53, 9398-9406.

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Year Published: 2019

Preliminary report on engineering and geological effects of the July 2019 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence

The Ridgecrest Earthquake sequence included a foreshock event on July 4 2019 (M6.4) and a M7.1 mainshock event on July 5 2019. These events occurred in the Eastern California Shear Zone, near Indian Wells Valley, south of China Lake and west of Searles Valley. GEER has partnered with several organizations to collect perishable data and document...

Stewart, Jonathan P.; Brandenberg, Scott J; Wang, Pengfei; Nweke, Chukwuebuka C; Hudson, Kenneth; Mazzoni, Silvia; Bozorgnia, Yousef; Hudnut, Kenneth W.; Davis, Craig A.; Ahdi, Sean K; Zareian, Farzin; Fayaz, Jawad; Koehler, Richard D; Chupik, Colin; Pierce, Ian; Williams, Alana; Akciz, Sinan; Hudson, Martin B; Kishida, Tadahiro; Brooks, Benjamin A.; Gold, Ryan D.; Ponti, Daniel J.; Scharer, Katherine; McPhillips, Devin; Duross, Christopher; Ericksen, Todd; Hernandez, Janis; Patton, Jay; Olson, Brian; Dawson, Timothy E.; Treiman, Jerome; Blake, Kelly; Buchhuber, Jeffrey; Madugo, Chris L M; Sun, Joseph; Donnellan, Andrea; Lyzenga, Greg; Conway, Erik
Stewart, J.P. (ed.), Brandenberg, S.J., Wang, Pengfei, N., Chukwuebuka C., Hudson, K., Mazzoni, S., Bozorgnia, Y., Hudnut, K.W., Davis, C.A., Ahdi, S.K., Zareian, F., Fayaz, J., Koehler, R.D., Chupik, C., Pierce, I., Williams, A., Akciz, S., Hudson, M.B., Kishida, T., Brooks, B.A., Gold, R.D., Ponti, D.J., Scharer, K.M., McPhillips, D.F., Ericksen, T.., Hernandez, J., Patton, J., Olson, B., Dawson, T., Treiman, J., Duross, C.B., Blake, K., Buchhuber, J., Madugo, C., Sun, J., Donnellan, A., Lyzenga, G., and Conway, E., 2019, Preliminary report on engineering and geological effects of the July 2019 Ridgecrest Earthquake sequence: Geotechnical Extreme Event Reconnaissance Association Report GEER-064, https://doi.org/10.18118/G6H66K.

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Year Published: 2019

Offshore shallow structure and sediment distribution, Point Sur to Point Arguello, central California

This publication consists of three map sheets that display shallow geologic structure, along with sediment distribution and thickness, for an about 225-km-long offshore section of the central California coast between Point Sur and Point Arguello. Each map sheet includes three maps, at scales of either 1:150,000 or 1:200,000, as well as a set of...

Johnson, Samuel Y.; Hartwell, Stephen R.; Watt, Janet T.; Beeson, Jeffrey W.; Dartnell, Peter
Johnson, S.Y., Hartwell, S.R., Watt, J.T., Beeson, J.W., and Dartnell, P., 2019, Offshore shallow structure and sediment distribution, Point Sur to Point Arguello, central California: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1158, 3 sheets, scales 1:150,000 and 1:200,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181158.

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Year Published: 2019

Widespread initiation, reactivation, and acceleration of landslides in the northern California Coast Ranges due to extreme rainfall

Episodically to continuously active slow-moving landslides are driven by precipitation. Climate change, which is altering both the frequency and magnitude of precipitation world21 wide, is therefore predicted to have a major impact on landslides. Here we examine the behavior of hundreds of slow-moving landslides in northern California in...

Handwerger, Alexander L.; Fielding, Eric J.; Huang, Mong-Han; Bennett, Georgina L.; Liang, Cunren; Schulz, William

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Year Published: 2019

Event detection performance of the PLUM earthquake early warning algorithm in southern California

We test the Japanese ground‐motion‐based earthquake early warning (EEW) algorithm, propagation of local undamped motion (PLUM), in southern California with application to the U.S. ShakeAlert system. In late 2018, ShakeAlert began limited public alerting in Los Angeles to areas of expected modified Mercalli intensity (⁠IMMI⁠) 4.0+ for magnitude 5.0...

Cochran, Elizabeth S.; Bunn, Julian; Minson, Sarah E.; Baltay, Annemarie S.; Kilb, Deborah L.; Kodera, Y.; Hoshiba, Mitsuyuki

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Year Published: 2019

An evaluation of debris-flow runout model accuracy and complexity in Montecito, CA: Towards a framework for regional inundation-hazard forecasting

Numerous debris-flow inundation models have been applied retroactively to noteworthy events around the world. While such studies can be useful in identifying controlling factors, calibrating model parameters, and assessing future hazards in specific study areas, model parameters tailored to individual events can be difficult to apply regionally....

Bessette-Kirton, Erin; Kean, Jason W.; Coe, Jeffrey A.; Rengers, Francis K.; Staley, Dennis M.
Bessette-Kirton, E.K., Kean, J.W., Coe, J.A., Rengers, F.K., Staley, D.M., 2019, An evaluation of debris-flow runout model accuracy and complexity in Montecito, California: Towards a framework for regional inundation-hazard forecasting, in Kean, J.W., Coe, J.A., Santi, P.M., and Guillen, B.K., eds., Debris-Flow Hazards Mitigation: Mechanics, Monitoring, Modeling, and Assessment, Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Debris Flow Hazards Mitigation, Golden, Colorado p. 257-264.

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Year Published: 2019

Taking the pulse of debris flows: Extracting debris-flow dynamics from good vibrations in southern California and central Colorado

The destructive nature of debris flows makes it difficult to quantify flow dynamics with direct instrumentation. For this reason, seismic sensors placed safely away from the flow path are often used to identify the timing and speed of debris flows. While seismic sensors have proven to be a valuable tool for event detection and early warning, their...

Michel, A.; Kean, Jason W.; Smith, Joel B.; Allstadt, Kate E.; Coe, Jeffrey A.
Michel, A., Kean, J.W., Smith, J.B., Allstadt, K., and Coe, J.A. (2019), Taking the pulse of debris flows: extracting debris-flow dynamics from good vibrations in southern California and central Colorado, in Debris-Flow Hazards Mitigation: Mechanics, Monitoring, Modeling, and Assessment, edited by Kean, J.W., Coe, J.A., Santi, P.M., and Guillen, B.K., Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists, Special Publication #28, p. 154-161.

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Year Published: 2019

Inundation, flow dynamics, and damage in the 9 January 2018 Montecito Debris-Flow Event, California, USA: Opportunities and challenges for post-wildfire risk assessment

Shortly before the beginning of the winter rainy season, one of the largest fires in California history (Thomas Fire) substantially increased the susceptibility of steep slopes in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties to debris flows. On January 9, 2018, before the fire was fully contained, an intense burst of rain fell on the portion of the burn...

Kean, Jason W.; Staley, Dennis M.; Lancaster, Jeremy T.; Rengers, Francis K.; Swanson, Brian J.; Coe, Jeffrey A.; Hernandez, Janis; Sigman, Aaron; Allstadt, Kate E.; Lindsay, Donald N.

Filter Total Items: 1,211
June 11, 2020

Land Treatment Exploration Tool — Step 6: Compare the LTDL Treatments

This video describes Step 6 of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool. In Step 6 the user filters through the returned list of legacy LTDL treatments to identify records that contain useful information or context for the current planned treatment boundary. Selected treatments are added to the developing report and subsequent exported Site Characterization PDFs.  

These

May 21, 2020

Count the bats -- how do your skills compare to a bat biologist's?

Do you have what it takes to be a bat biologist? USGS bat researchers are counting Townsend’s big eared bats to monitor how their populations are doing. Watch the video to try your hand at a bat count and see how your skills compare to a USGS scientist! You don’t need sound to count the bats—but if you turn your sound on you’ll be able to hear the bats’ echolocation calls

A man stands on the bow of a small aluminum boat wearing bib waders, a personal floatation device, and a mask.
May 4, 2020

Fieldwork during COVID-19 pandemic

Marine technician Dan Powers, from the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's Marine Facility (PCMSC MarFac), wears all the required personal protective equipment: bib waders, personal floatation device, and mask. He and MarFac engineering technician Pete Dal Ferro went out on Alviso Slough to retrieve and clean current meters that are secured to metal frames. The

...
A man navigates a personal watercraft slowly out of a harbor along a jetty.
March 12, 2020

Personal watercraft equipped with sonar and GPS

A USGS scientist navigates a personal watercraft (PWC) slowly through Elkhorn Slough. The PWC is equipped with an echosounder and GPS, to record accurate depth and location. This mapping effort is part of recurring surveys in the Monterey Bay area. Data from these surveys help the USGS understand how sand moves around the Bay, how the beaches, inlets, harbors, and other

...
A person navigates a personal watercraft in the nearshore with coastal bluffs in the background.
March 10, 2020

Collecting nearshore bathymetry data off Rio del Mar

A USGS scientist navigates a personal watercraft equipped with sonar and GPS to collect depth information (bathymetry) of the nearshore. This mapping effort is part of recurring surveys in the Monterey Bay area. Data from these surveys help the USGS understand how sand moves around the Bay, how the beaches, inlets, harbors, and other coastal features change with storms and

...
A young woman walks along the sand wearing a backpack with light equipment in it.
March 9, 2020

Collecting beach profile data with GPS

A USGS scientist walks along Santa Cruz Main Beach at the edge of the San Lorenzo River in Santa Cruz, California, wearing a backpack with GPS equipment. She is collecting elevation data that will be used to create a topographic map of the beach. This mapping effort is part of recurring surveys in the Monterey Bay area. Data from these surveys help the USGS understand how

...
February 27, 2020

PubTalk 2/2020 — From California to Cambodia

From California to Cambodia - Surface Water Mapping Using Cloud-Based Remote Sensing (by Christopher Soulard, USGS Research Geographer)

  • With cloud based remote sensing we can now access, process, and analyze terabytes of satellite imagery remotely via the internet.
  • Satellite images and streamgages are the two most common measurement tools used to
Attribution: Science Support
A group of six photographs showing equipment used for collecting data in the field.
February 24, 2020

Field equipment for bathymetric and topographic surveys

Field equipment used by USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center scientists for bathymetric and topographic surveys in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California

maps of Anza Valley, CA comparing land use in 1934 to 2005
February 14, 2020

Land Use Change (1934 - 2005), Anza Valley, CA

Land use change in the Anza Valley, CA from 1934 to 2005.  

Green background flyer with images of birds near fields and flooding with boats.
February 10, 2020

2020 February Public Lecture Flyer

2020 February Public Lecture Flyer

From California to Cambodia - Surface Water Mapping Using Cloud-Based Remote Sensing

By Chris Soulard, USGS Western Geographic Science Center

  • With cloud based remote sensing we can now access, process, and analyze terabytes of satellite imagery remotely via the internet. 
  • Satellite
...
Photo of complex equipment on mud tank, including pipes, shaker screens, and other mud-spattered equipment.
January 31, 2020

Mud tank and shakers during groundwater well drilling

Ever wondered about how groundwater observation wells are drilled? This photo provides a behind-the-scenes look as USGS drilled a groundwater well in California last month. This photo looks down over a mud tank and shakers, which are part of drilling operations. The drillers pump clean mud from the tank down the hole as they drill; this mud plays an important role in

...
Attribution: Water Resources
Filter Total Items: 923
Map of San Antonio Reservoir and Watershed, California
January 23, 2020

In two recent publications, California Water Science Center scientists discuss their research using acoustic and optic technology to measure the quantity and movement of sediment in rivers and reservoirs.

two women making measurements of a rupture in the ground surface
January 23, 2020

The 2019 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence, which startled nearby California residents over the 4 July holiday with magnitude 6.4 and magnitude 7.1 earthquakes, included 34,091 earthquakes overall, detailed in a high-resolution catalog created for the sequence.

Read SSA News Release

Satellite imagery of the December 2019 low flying survey looking at geology, hydrology and natural resources of the region
December 5, 2019

For about two months, starting around December 7, 2019, an airplane operated under contract to the USGS will be making low-level flights over parts of the eastern Mojave Desert.

Dr. Barnard
December 5, 2019

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.

USGS scientist Nancy Prouty collects deep-sea water samples as part of the EXPRESS 2019 expedition
October 30, 2019

Keep up to speed with the latest USGS deep-sea research cruise with this seafloor syntax.

A crowd of about 20 people stand facing a ship docked along a pier.
October 21, 2019

Expanding Pacific Research and Exploration of Submerged Systems (EXPRESS) Expedition Team Hosts National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), USGS, and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Leadership on October 21, 2019, in San Francisco

gray-scale map of San Francisco Bay area
October 17, 2019

Today, the U.S. Geological Survey and the State of California pressed the “go” button to allow the first-ever statewide public testing of the California Early Earthquake Warning System, which is powered by USGS’s earthquake early warning alerts, called ShakeAlerts.

vertical timeline with text bullets
October 17, 2019

How will ShakeAlert® likely perform now on a large earthquake impacting a major urban area? How much warning will you get? To answer this, let’s do a thought experiment...

Read the new Science for Everyone article at What if the ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning System Had Been Operating During the M6.9 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake?

Deep-sea organisms
October 16, 2019

Keep up to speed with the latest USGS deep-sea research cruise with this seafloor syntax.

ROV control room
October 16, 2019

Keep up to speed with our EXPRESS research cruise with this latest seafloor syntax!

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