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: 417
Date published: May 14, 2008
Status: Completed

ShakeOut

The ShakeOut Scenario was located in southern California where earthquake risk is high compared to the rest of the country. This scenario is a hypothetical, but plausible 7.8 magnitude earthquake on the southern San Andreas Fault. This scenario was completed in May 2008. The ShakeOut Scenario is described in two publications: The Scenario (Jones and others) and The Narrative (Perry and others...

Date published: January 1, 2008
Status: Completed

Does Pleasure Point Need A Seawall?

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study of Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz, California, from 2005-2007.

Date published: January 1, 2005
Status: Completed

Should Englebright Dam Be Removed?

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study from 2001-2004, on Englebright Dam and the science behind its removal.

Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Tsunami Hazards in the Santa Barbara Channel

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study of tsunami hazards in the Santa Barbara Channel from 1993-2003.

Contacts: Ray Sliter
Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Big Sur Coastal Landslides

Information about USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center studies on coastal landslides in the Big Sur area

Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Oceanography Beyond the Golden Gate

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's oceanographic studies offshore of San Francisco Bay, from 1989-2003.

Date published: November 15, 2001
Status: Archived

SAGEMAP

A GIS Database for Sage-grouse and Shrubsteppe Management in the Intermountain West

Contacts: Steven E Hanser
Date published: October 1, 2001
Status: Completed

Water-Quality Sampling at Five Hydrologic Benchmark Stations in the Western United States

The Hydrologic Benchmark Network (HBN) was established in 1963 to provide  Swiftwater Creek, MT long-term measurements of streamflow and water quality in areas of the United States that are minimally affected by human activities. Historically, the HBN has used a fixed-interval sampling strategy, however other more robust sampling strategies are now available. Trend networks, for example, can...

Date published: January 1, 1999
Status: Completed

Mapping Shipping Hazards in San Francisco Bay

Information about the 1997-1998 study by USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center, to map the floor of San Francisco Bay in order to reveal the bay's shipping hazards.

Contacts: Peter Dartnell
Filter Total Items: 562
Date published: January 1, 2017

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

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

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: 100-year storm in Los Angeles County

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 %2

Date published: January 1, 2017

Backscatter [Fugro]--Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents 2-m-resolution data collected by Fugro Pelagos for the acoustic-backscatter map of the Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California. The GeoTiff is included in "Backscatter_[Fugro]_OffshoreGaviota.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7TH8JWJ. These data accompany the pamphlet and map sheets of Johnson, S...

Date published: January 1, 2017

Backscatter [USGS07]--Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents 2-m-resolution data collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in 2007 for the acoustic-backscatter map of the Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California. The GeoTiff is included in "Backscatter_[USGS07]_OffshoreGaviota.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7TH8JWJ. These data accompany the pamphlet and...

Date published: January 1, 2017

Minisparker seismic-reflection data of field activity B-05-11-CC, from Point Sur to Morro Bay, offshore central California, 2011-09-12 to 2011-09-26

This dataset includes raw, and swell-filtered, high-resolution seismic-reflection data, collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in 2011, between Point Sur and Morro Bay in central California.

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: 100-year storm in Santa Barbara County

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 So

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: average conditions in Santa Barbara County

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 So

Date published: January 1, 2017

Backscatter [USGS08]--Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents 2-m-resolution data collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in 2008 for the acoustic-backscatter map of the Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California. The GeoTiff is included in "Backscatter_[USGS08]_OffshoreGaviota.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7TH8JWJ. These data accompany the pamphlet and...

Date published: January 1, 2017

Habitat--Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents data for the habitat map of the Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California. The vector data file is included in "Habitat_OffshoreGaviota.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7TH8JWJ. These data accompany the pamphlet and map sheets of Johnson, S.Y., Dartnell, P., Cochrane, G.R., Hartwell, S.R., Golden...

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 ocean-currents projections: 20-year storm in Orange County

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

Date published: January 1, 2017

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

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 %2

Date published: January 1, 2017

Sediment size distributions from San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh, California

As part of the hydrodynamic and sediment transport investigations in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh, California, particle size distributions of bed sediments were measured at most instrumented stations and are presented in a comma-delimited values spreadsheet. This portion of the data release presents San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh sediment particle size distributions from samples col...

Filter Total Items: 438
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Year Published: 1992

The Loma Prieta, California, Earthquake of October 17, 1989: Strong ground motion and ground failure

Professional Paper 1551 describes the effects at the land surface caused by the Loma Prieta earthquake. These effects: include the pattern and characteristics of strong ground shaking, liquefaction of both floodplain deposits along the Pajaro and Salinas Rivers in the Monterey Bay region and sandy artificial fills along the margins of San...

Coordinated by Holzer, Thomas L.
The Loma Prieta, California, Earthquake of October 17, 1989: Strong Ground Motion and Ground Failure; 1992; PP; 1551; Coordinated by Holzer, Thomas L.

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Year Published: 1991

The Loma Prieta earthquake, ground motion, and damage in Oakland, Treasure Island, and San Francisco

The basis of this study is the acceleration, velocity, and displacement wave-forms of the Loma Prieta earthquake (18 October 1989; M = 7.0) at two rock sites in San Francisco, a rock site on Yerba Buena Island, an artificial-fill site on Treasure Island, and three sites in Oakland underlain by thick sections of poorly consolidated Pleistocene...

Hanks, Thomas C.; Brady, A. Gerald

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Year Published: 1990

Ascension-Monterey Canyon system: history and development

No abstract available.

Greene, H. Gary; Hicks, Karen R.
Ascension-Monterey Canyon system: history and development; 1990; Book chapter; Book; Geology and tectonics of the central California coastal region; Greene, H. Gary; Hicks, Karen R.

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Year Published: 1990

National water summary 1987: Hydrologic events and water supply and use

Water use in the United States, as measured by freshwater withdrawals in 1985, averaged 338,000 Mgal/d (million gallons per day), which is enough water to cover the 48 conterminous States to a depth of about 2.4 inches. Only 92,300 Mgal/d, or 27.3 percent of the water withdrawn, was consumptive use and thus lost to immediate further use; the...

Carr, Jerry E.; Chase, Edith B.; Paulson, Richard W.; Moody, David W.
National water summary 1987: hydrologic events and water supply and use; 1990; WSP; 2350; Carr, Jerry E.; Chase, Edith B.; Paulson, Richard W.; Moody, David W.

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Year Published: 1990

A water-resources data-network evaluation for Monterey County, California; Phase 3, Northern Salinas River drainage basin

This report evaluates existing data collection networks and possible additional data collection to monitor quantity and quality of precipitation, surface water, and groundwater in the northern Salinas River drainage basin, California. Of the 34 precipitation stations identified, 20 were active and are concentrated in the northwestern part of the...

Templin, W.E.; Schluter, R.C.
Attribution: Water Resources
A water-resources data-network evaluation for Monterey County, California; Phase 3, Northern Salinas River drainage basin; 1990; WRI; 89-4123; Templin, W. E.; Schluter, R. C.

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Year Published: 1990

Estimates of consumptive use and ground-water return flow and the effect of rising and sustained high river stage on the method of estimation in Cibola Valley, Arizona and California, 1983 and 1984

In Cibola Valley, Arizona, water is pumped from the Colorado River to irrigate crops and to maintain wildlife habitat. Unused water percolates to the water table and, as groundwater, moves downgradient into areas of phreatophytes, into a drainage ditch, out of the flood plain, and back to the river. In 1983 and 1984, groundwater return flow was...

Owen-Joyce, Sandra J.
Estimates of consumptive use and ground-water return flow and the effect of rising and sustained high river stage on the method of estimation in Cibola Valley, Arizona and California, 1983 and 1984; 1990; WRI; 89-4194; Owen-Joyce, Sandra J.

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Year Published: 1990

The San Andreas Fault System, California

Maps of northern and southern California printed on flyleaf inside front cover and on adjacent pages show faults that have had displacement within the past 2 million years. Those that have had displacement within historical time are shown in red. Bands of red tint emphasize zones of historical displacement; bands of orange tint emphasize major...

Wallace, Robert E.
The San Andreas Fault System, California; 1990; PP; 1515; Edited by Wallace, Robert E.

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Year Published: 1989

Observations in Monterey Canyon and Fan Valley using the submersible Alvin and a photographic sled

Eittreim, Stephen L.; Embley, R.W.; Normark, W.R.; Greene, H. Gary; McHugh, C.M.; Ryan, W.B.
Observations in Monterey Canyon and Fan Valley using the submersible Alvin and a photographic sled; 1989; OFR; 89-291; Eittreim, Stephen L.; Embley, R. W.; Normark, W. R.; Greene, H. G.; McHugh, C. M.; Ryan, W. B.

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Year Published: 1988

Estimates of consumptive use and ground-water return flow using water budgets in Parker Valley, Arizona and California, 1981-84

Annual water budgets were used to estimate consumptive use by vegetation and groundwater return flow in Parker Valley, Arizona and California. Consumptive use by vegetation was estimated to be 482,800 acre-ft in 1981, 432,000 acre-ft in 1982, 413,500 acre-ft in 1983, and 420,900 acre-ft in 1984 on the Arizona side of the Colorado River, and 45,400...

Owen-Joyce, Sandra J.
Estimates of consumptive use and ground-water return flow using water budgets in Parker Valley, Arizona and California, 1981-84; 1988; WRI; 88-4063; Owen-Joyce, Sandra J.

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Year Published: 1988

Landslides, Floods, and Marine Effects of the Storm of January 3-5, 1982, in the San Francisco Bay Region, California

A catastrophic rainstorm in central California on January 3-5,1982, dropped as much as half the mean annual precipitation within a period of about 32 hours, triggering landslides and floods throughout 10 counties in the vicinity of the San Francisco Bay. More than 18,000 of the slides induced by the storm transformed into debris flows that swept...

Ellen, Stephen D.; Wieczorek, Gerald F.
Landslides, Floods, and Marine Effects of the Storm of January 3-5, 1982, in the San Francisco Bay Region, California; 1988; PP; 1434; Edited by Ellen, Stephen D.; Wieczorek, Gerald F.

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Year Published: 1988

Multichannel seismic-reflection profiles collected in 1979, between latitudes 34 degrees 15' and 36 degrees 30' north, off the California coast from Pt. Conception to Point Sur

McCulloch, D.S.; Mann, D. M.; Sliter, R.; McClellan, P.H.
Multichannel seismic-reflection profiles collected in 1979, between latitudes 34 degrees 15' and 36 degrees 30' north, off the California coast from Pt. Conception to Point Sur; 1988; OFR; 88-224; McCulloch, D. S.; Mann, D. M.; Sliter, R.; McClellan, P. H.

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Year Published: 1988

Preliminary paleolimnologic data for the Walker Lake subbasin, California and Nevada

Benson, Larry V.
Preliminary paleolimnologic data for the Walker Lake subbasin, California and Nevada; 1988; WRI; 87-4258; Benson, Larry V.

Filter Total Items: 1,126
July 27, 2017

USGS Public Lecture: Warm Ice—Dynamics of Rapidly Changing Glaciers

  • Glacier Numerology – The how big, how long, how thick, how much, how often, of glacier science.
  • Glacier Photography – While a picture may be worth a thousand words, a collection of images may tell a complete forensic story.
  • Glacier Geophysics – How new technologies are being introduced to reexamine and refine decades old glacier analyses.
Southwest view of Soda-Avawatz Fault
July 26, 2017

Soda-Avawatz Fault, eastern Avawatz Mountains

This is a view to the southwest from the top of the piedmont on the eastern side of the Avawatz Mountains, ~25 km northwest of Baker, CA. In the foreground, from right to left, are the Avawatz Mountain Front, composed of Precambrian crystalline metamorphic rocks, a narrow pediment developed on these metamorphic rocks, a sliver of marble juxtaposed against the pediment, and

...
July 19, 2017

UAS Video, July 19, 2017, of the Mud Creek Landslide in Big Sur

The Mud Creek landslide on Big Sur coast, California, occurred on May 20, 2017. USGS Mendenhall researcher Shawn Harrison took this video from an unmanned aerial system (UAS) on July 19, 2017. USGS drone footage shows the slide from many angles. It points out buried and unburied parts of Highway 1, as well as new roads built across the slide for monitoring purposes.

View from the sky looking at a steep oceanfront cliff with a road running along it close to the water, with lettering on top.
July 19, 2017

Location of Mud Creek slide

Lead-in to the Mud Creek slide UAS (drone) footage, Big Sur, California, July 19. 2017.

Two same-size items: Pack of playing cards (top) and circuit board with fan and electronic components (bottom).
July 18, 2017

Small computer that controls video cameras above beach in Santa Cruz

The small computer, or “micro-controller,” at the bottom of this photo controls the operation of two video cameras mounted on the 10-story Dream Inn hotel in Santa Cruz, California. The cameras take 10-minute videos of Santa Cruz Main Beach and Cowells Beach every half hour during daylight hours (view the most recent images).

...
Ashy storm-petrel (Oceanodroma homochroa) with metal identification band being held by a USGS researcher
July 14, 2017

Ashy Storm-Petrel Call

This is the call of the elusive Ashy Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma homochroa). Ashy Storm-Petrels nest in burrows and crevices on offshore rocks and islands. To avoid predators, they only arrive and depart their island nests under the cover of darkness. That makes studying them pretty difficult. But scientists have come up with a clever solution: they set up acoustic recorders

Photograph of California coastal Highway 1 looking north toward Big Sur.
July 12, 2017

Big Sur Coast

Near San Simeon, view looks north up Highway 1 along the California coast toward Big Sur.

Two photographs taken from the sky looking down on a landslide into the ocean water with a plume of murky water along the coast.
July 12, 2017

Drone’s-eye views of the toe of the Mud Creek landslide

Drone’s-eye views of the toe of the Mud Creek landslide, from videos shot by Shawn Harrison on July 12, 2017

Photo of child and USGS employee studying an egg.
July 11, 2017

Child Looking at Egg

Taken 7/11/2017 in Suisun City. The California Waterfowl Association hosts a "Youth Hunter Camp" for children at the Grizzly Ranch in Suisun City, CA. Here, a USGS employee and a child look through a tube at an egg to observe its contents.

Photo of USGS employee teaching children how to monitor vegetation density and height for waterfowl studies.
July 11, 2017

WERC Measuring Vegetation around Waterfowl Nests

Taken 7/11/2017 in Suisun City, CA. A USGS employee teaches children at the California Waterfowl Association's "Youth Hunter Camp" to measure the vegetation surrounding waterfowl nests.

Photo of USGS employee building a decoy waterfowl nest for outreach demonstration.
July 11, 2017

WERC Scientist Building Decoy Waterfowl Nest

Taken 7/11/2017 at Grizzly Ranch, Suisun City, CA. USGS biological science technician Breanne Cooney builds a decoy waterfowl nest for an outreach demonstration. 

USGS employee building a decoy waterfowl nest for outreach demonstration.
July 11, 2017

WERC Scientist Building Decoy Waterfowl Nest 2

Taken 7/11/2017 at Grizzly Ranch, Suisun City, CA. USGS biological science technician Breanne Cooney builds a decoy waterfowl nest for an outreach demonstration.

Filter Total Items: 975
USGS
August 21, 2012

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. — The southern sea otter population continues its pattern of tepid recovery, according to the latest population survey led by U.S. Geological Survey, California Department of Fish and Game Office of Spill Prevention and Response and Monterey Bay Aquarium scientists. 

USGS
August 16, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Residents should not be alarmed to witness a low-flying airplane over the northern Sacramento Valley and surrounding hills starting around August 17. 

USGS
August 15, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. —The U.S. Geological Survey is reducing its footprint in Menlo Park to lower rent costs. The move is part of a larger consolidation plan motivated by the Presidential directive to reduce government space utilization. There is not a plan to reduce staff, and the USGS will continue to maintain all operations currently housed in Menlo Park.

Taking GPS coordinates at the Amargosa Desert Research Site
July 24, 2012

Summer is the time when most CalVO scientists get out into the field to conduct geologic and ground-based monitoring investigations of our regional volcanoes.

USGS
July 23, 2012

Dr. Joseph Colgan, a research geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, was named one of President Obama's recipients of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers.

USGS
July 23, 2012

Dr. Karen Felzer, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey, was named one of President Obama's recipients of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. 

USGS
July 17, 2012

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Nitrate was detected at high concentrations in one quarter of the aquifer system used for Inland Empire public water supply. Additionally, high concentrations of perchlorate were found in 11 percent of the aquifer system, and in moderate concentrations in 53 percent. This aquifer system includes the Upper Santa Ana Valley, San Jacinto, and Elsinore groundwater...

USGS
June 26, 2012

Tools, Resources for Earthquake Readiness and Emergency Management To Be Shared, Explained by U.S. Geological Survey Scientists at Conference at Caltech
 

USGS
June 26, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. —Throughout the United States, June is recognized as National Oceans Month.  This Thursday, the U.S. Geological Survey invites the public to a lecture entitled "Scanning the Seafloor with Sound." 

USGS
June 5, 2012

California, Louisiana and Mississippi join the more than 40 states covered by the US Topo
 

USGS
May 30, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. —May is American Wetlands Month. Hear how U.S. Geological Survey scientists are supporting the ongoing restoration efforts to improve South Bay wetlands for endangered species and migratory birds, as well as conducting studies to better understand this wetland ecosystem, and how adaptive management practices will be working over the coming decades to restore...

USGS
May 29, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. – 100 years ago, in June 1912, the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century took place in what is now Alaska's Katmai National Park and Preserve. U.S. Geological Survey geologist Judy Fierstein, co-author of a new landmark study on this huge volcanic event, shares her work with the community in a free public lecture Wednesday, June 6, a century to the...