Unified Interior Regions


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: 580
Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 flood-hazard projections: 1-year storm in Ventura County

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 erosi

Date published: January 1, 2017

Groundwater-Quality Data in the Tulare Shallow Aquifer Study Unit, 2014-2015_Tables

The U.S. Geological Survey collected groundwater samples from 95 domestic wells in Tulare and Kings Counties, California in 2014-2015. The wells were sampled for the Tulare Shallow Aquifer Study Unit of the California State Water Resources Control Board Groundwater Ambient Monitoring and Assessment (GAMA) Program Priority Basin Project’s assessment of the quality of groundwater reso

Date published: January 1, 2017

Bathymetry--Offshore of Point Conception Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents data for bathymetry for several seafloor maps of the Offshore of Point Conception Map Area, California. The GeoTiff 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.,...

Date published: December 21, 2016

Wind-wave and suspended-sediment data from Liberty Island and Little Holland Tract, Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California

Investigate the influence of wind waves on sediment dynamics in two flooded agricultural tracts. Part of a large interdisciplinary study led by the USGS and funded by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to investigate how shallow-water habitats in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta function and whether they provide good habitat for native fish species, including the Delta smelt.

Date published: October 20, 2016

Nearshore waves in southern California: hindcast, and modeled historical and 21st-century projected time series

Abstract: This data release presents modeled time series of nearshore waves along the southern California coast, from Point Conception to the Mexican border, hindcasted for 1980-2010 and projected using global climate model forcing for 1975-2005 and 2012-2100.
Details: As part of the Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS), time series of hindcast, historical, and 21st-century

Date published: August 30, 2016

Chirp seismic-reflection data: San Pablo Bay, California

This data release includes chirp seismic-reflection data collected in 2014 aboard the USGS R/V Snavely in San Pablo Bay, part of northern San Francisco Bay. The data were collected as part of USGS efforts to better understand the fault geometry of the Hayward and Rodgers Creek faults beneath the bay.

Date published: August 15, 2016

Sediment core data from the northern flank of Monterey Canyon, offshore California

The five files included in this U.S. Geological Survey data release are data from a set of sediment cores acquired from the continental slope, north of Monterey Canyon, offshore central California.

Date published: August 4, 2016

Prospect- and Mine-Related Features from U.S. Geological Survey 7.5- and 15-Minute Topographic Quadrangle Maps of the Western United States

These data are part of a larger USGS project to develop an updated geospatial database of mines, mineral deposits and mineral regions in the United States. Mine and prospect-related symbols, such as those used to represent prospect pits, mines, adits, dumps, tailings, etc., hereafter referred to as “mine” symbols or features, are currently being digitized on a st

Date published: June 28, 2016

2014 Water-Table Contours of the Mojave River and the Morongo Groundwater Basins, San Bernardino County, California (ver. 1.2, September 2020)

During 2014, the U.S. Geological Survey and other agencies made approximately 1,026 water-level measurements in the Mojave River and Morongo groundwater basins. These data document recent conditions and, when compared with previous data, changes in groundwater levels. A water-level contour map was drawn using data from about 610 wells, providing coverage for most of the basins. Water-le

Date published: June 6, 2016

Marine geophysical data—Point Arena to Cape Mendocino

This data release includes marine geophysical data collected on three research cruises conducted in 2010 and 2012 between Point Arena and Cape Mendocino. The overall goal of this research is to better understandthe northernmost section of the San Andreas Fault (SAF).

Date published: April 20, 2016

Structures Data

USGS data portray selected structures data, including the location and characteristics of manmade facilities. Characteristics consist of a structure's physical form (footprint), function, name, location, and detailed information about the structure. The types of structures collected are largely determined by the needs of the disaster planning and response and homeland security organizations....

Filter Total Items: 1,109
man walking along wet sand on beach wearing a backpack with an antenna sticking pout of it
January 31, 2017

Mapping the beach with a GPS-equipped backpack unit.

USGS scientist Daniel Hoover mapping the beach at Santa Cruz with a GPS-equipped backpack unit.

January 31, 2017

Hatching an Engineer

What does it take to become an ocean engineer? Here is the path that USGS Gerry Hatcher took.

two young men standing on a pier with a large tripod, looking down at camera, and holding equipment.
January 31, 2017

Setting up a lidar scanner to map the beach.

 USGS scientists setting up a lidar scanner on the pier to map the beach near Capitola, California.

January 31, 2017

What's Drifting Beneath Kauai's Ocean?

Residents and visitors both revel in Kauai’s lush landscape, and beneath its seascape. However, it’s underwater where things don’t look so healthy. Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey put together a detailed picture of the physical environment of the coral reefs at Makua Beach. Understanding just what these reefs are exposed to and for how long, may help explain why

USGS scientist standing with a pole annotated with land-surface elevation marks at given years at bench mark H 1235 RESET.
January 31, 2017

Land Subsidence near El Nido, CA

National Geodetic Survey vertical control bench mark H1235 RESET in Merced County, California. H 1235 RESET is in the median of State Highway 15. This is one of several bench mark locations used to help measure the largest recent subsidence in the area using repeat surveys. The exact maximum subsidence location is unknown; however, this bench mark has some of the larger

USGS scientist standing with a pole annotated with land-surface elevation marks at given years at bench mark W 990.
January 31, 2017

Land Subsidence near El Nido, CA

National Geodetic Survey vertical control bench mark W990 CADWR in Merced County, California. W 990 CADWR is on the Mariposa Bypass Bridge on Washington Rd. This is one of several bench mark locations used to help measure the largest recent subsidence in the area using repeat surveys. The exact maximum subsidence location is unknown; however, this bench mark has some of

Satellite image showing the flooding in California.
January 30, 2017

January Rain, Snow Refills California Reservoirs

A decade of drought in California has eased after the first month of 2017 thanks to heavy rains and snow, a fact that Landsat images are helping to confirm.

January 26, 2017

PubTalk 1/2017 — Unusual sources of tsunamis

A presentation on "Unusual Sources of Tsunamis From Krakatoa to Monterey Bay" by Eric Geist, USGS Research Geophysicist

- Not all tsunamis are generated by earthquakes.
- Tsunamis can be caused by volcanoes, landslides, and even atmospheric disturbances
- Data from tide gauges can help unravel the complex physics of these sources


Attribution: Natural Hazards
January 20, 2017

Post-wildfire debris flow: 2016 Fish Fire, Las Lomas Canyon

The June 2016 Fish Fire burned over 12 km^2 in Los Angeles County, California. After the fire, the USGS installed an automated rain-triggered camera to monitor post-wildfire flooding and debris flow in a small canyon above the Las Lomas debris basin in Duarte. This video shows the peak flow triggered by an intense rainstorm on January 20, 2017.

Invasive Aquatic Vegetation
January 16, 2017

Invasive water primrose

Invasive water primrose (Ludwigia species) and water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) line the marsh edge in Mandeville Cut near the Port of Stockton, California’s third largest port.  Invasive aquatic vegetation – dominated by Brazilian waterweed, water hyacinth, and water primrose – has increased exponentially in recent years, clogging about 17,400

delta waters with a significant amount of floating vegetation
January 16, 2017

Invasive Aquatic Vegetation, Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

Invasive aquatic vegetation chokes Lindsey Slough, creating a potentially challenging environment for fish and other aquatic life. The slough is the site of a 2014 restoration project in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to improve freshwater tidal marsh and spawning habitat for Delta smelt and other fish.

a woman pulls vegetation out of the water with a rake
January 16, 2017

Invasive Brazilian Waterweed, Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

Landscape ecologist Shruti Khanna uses a threshing rake to collect Brazilian waterweed (Egeria densa) in the Delta. The USGS is conducting research to measure the impact of invasive aquatic vegetation on sediment transport, turbidity, and marsh accretion rates in Delta. 

Filter Total Items: 985
September 20, 2010

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Urban development can isolate wildlife populations and promote inbreeding, according to a genetic study of animals in the Santa Monica Mountains by researchers at the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey.

September 15, 2010

MENLO PARK, Calif. – Federal, state and local agencies are gathering Saturday at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Menlo Park campus for a one-day event aimed at helping the public better prepare for disasters. 

September 3, 2010

SACRAMENTO, CA. — High concentrations of naturally occurring inorganic constituents – including arsenic, boron and lead – are found in about 14 percent of the primary aquifers in Napa, Sonoma and Marin counties, according to a U.S. Geological Survey report

August 24, 2010

IDYLLWILD, CALIF. — Thirty-six rare tadpoles were released into a wild steam today near Idyllwild, Calif. as part of a program aimed at giving the nearly-extinct, Southern California population of mountain yellow-legged frogs a chance of thriving in the wild again.

August 3, 2010

Santa Cruz, Calif. – After a decade of steady recovery, the southern sea otter — a federally listed threatened species — is in decline for the second year in a row, according to the latest population survey by U.S. Geological Survey researchers.

July 27, 2010

Menlo Park, Calif. — Ron Beck, a scientist for the U.S. Geological Survey Land Remote Sensing Program, will discuss the ways in which satellite observations are documenting dramatic changes in Earth’s surface features in a public lecture on Thursday, July 29.

July 9, 2010

San Diego – The U.S. Geological Survey will showcase its latest high-resolution geospatial data and state-of-the-art mapping technology at the annual ESRI Users Conference in San Diego, California, July 12 – 16, at the San Diego Convention Center.

June 23, 2010

Menlo Park, Calif. — Cooperative oceanographic research between the U.S. Geological Survey and the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute is the focus of a public lecture by MBARI marine geologist, Charlie Paull in Menlo Park on Thursday, June 24.

May 25, 2010

Menlo Park, Calif. — A new U.S. Geological Survey documentary video exploring the world of the endangered Mojave Desert tortoise will be introduced and discussed by USGS scientists during a public showing in Menlo Park on Thursday, May 27.

April 27, 2010

For tiny Devils Hole pupfish, startling video shows it must have felt like a “huge tsunami” when violent water-level oscillations from an earthquake 300 miles away disturbed the small ledge they live on in a single Mojave Desert cavern pool for some 15 minutes. 

April 16, 2010

The endangered mountain yellow-legged frog will take a major step in its recovery this week when, for the first time, scientists reintroduce its eggs to its former habitat.

March 26, 2010

Menlo Park, Calif. — A research seismologist who visited Chile to install seismographs following the recent magnitude 8.8 earthquake and was there for some of the aftershocks will speak about his experiences at a Menlo Park event Monday.