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: 1,119
May 25, 2006

PubTalk 5/2006 — What Lies Beneath?

Concealed sedimentary basins and hidden oil under Silicon Valley

By Richard G. Stanley, Geologist 


  • Before computers and cubicles there were orchards-- and a few oil wells, too
  • Learn about the "oil boom" in Los Gatos about 100 years ago
  • See how historical records from old oil wells, together with modern
Image: Killdeer
May 23, 2006


Birds found in and around the Salton Sea, California.

Photo of a fallow field with exurban development in the background
May 1, 2006

Fallow field with exurban development in the background in CA

Fallow field with exurban development in the background in California. This photo was taken for the Trends Landcover project during field work. 

April 27, 2006

PubTalk 4/2006 — California's Greatest Fault

How historical data from 1906 have shed light on the San Andreas Fault

By Carol S. Prentice, Geologist 


  • What insights are gained from merging original 1906 observations and field notes with today's earthquake science?
  • Data collected during and after the catastropic 1906 earthquake prove to be essential to-
Tamarisk growing along a river
April 22, 2006

A single species stand of nonnative tamarisk

Single species stand of nonnative tamarisk on the Lower Colorado River at Cibola National Wildlife Refuge, California

Small tress re-growing after a fire
April 22, 2006

Nonnative tamarisk re-grows following a wildfire

Nonnative tamarisk is resistant to wildfire, in part because of its ablity to re-sprout.

Shrubs re-sprout after a wildfire
April 22, 2006

Nonnative tamarisk re-sprouts after wildfire

Nonnative tamarisk is resistant to wildfire, in part due to its ability to resprout

A tamarisk plant with many pink flowers
April 22, 2006

Tamarisk plants can make many flowers

Tamarisk plants have been sucessful in southwestern US river- and stream-side habitats, in part because of its ablity to make many flowers and, therefore, seeds.

Picture of a valley in California depicting residential housing
April 1, 2006

A valley shot with residential housing in California

Photograph taken during a Land Cover Trends Project field trip in California of a valley with residential housing.

A picture of a wind farm in California
April 1, 2006

A wind farm in California

A wind farm with many wind mills on a hiil in California. The picture was taken during a field trip for the Land Cover Trends project.

March 30, 2006

PubTalk 3/2006 — The Great 1906 Earthquake

Lessons learned, lessons forgotten, and future directions in earthquake science

By Mary Lou Zoback, Seismologist (and Chair of the Steering Committee, 1906 Earthquake Centennial Alliance)

  • The 1906 California disaster taught us that--
    • the San Andreas Fault is a continuous feature extending nearly the length of the State
Photo of a postfire landscape that was previously blackbrush scrub in the Mojave Desert
February 28, 2006

Winter, Postfire Landscape in the Mojave Desert

Picture taken February, 2006, Beaver Dam mountains, UT. Postfire landscape taken after a summer 2005 fire in what was previously blackbrush scrub. 

Filter Total Items: 992
April 14, 2000

Workshop on "Restoring Pacific Rivers: Evaluating the Progress of Watershed Restoration for Salmon."

April 7, 2000

The Hector Mine earthquake that occurred Oct. 16, 1999, in the Mojave Desert east of Los Angeles, woke a lot of people up but injured no one and caused a minimal amount of property damage.

April 5, 2000

The rhododendrons and azaleas that create a spectacular display of color each year at the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, will be at their peak for the next few weeks, and many of the exotic plants will be at their best when the USGS holds its triennial Open House, May 13 and 14, at the center at 345 Middlefield Road in Menlo Park.

March 22, 2000

The most acidic waters ever measured are percolating through an underground mine near Redding, Calif., according to scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey.

March 15, 2000

Recent rains may have made things unstable on some parts of San Bruno Mountain, south of San Francisco, but one fault the mountain doesn’t have is a fault; at least none that will cause any problems, according to scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey.

February 29, 2000

If certain employees of the U.S. Geological Survey are begging for used tennis balls, it must mean that something big is brewing. And it is.

January 24, 2000

On January 26, 1700, the largest earthquake known to have occurred in the "lower 48" United States, rocked Cascadia, a region 600 miles long that includes northern California, Oregon, Washington, and southern British Columbia.

December 16, 1999

The U.S. Geological Survey still needs a few good back yards. Beginning in January 2000, the USGS Earthquake Hazards Team, in cooperation the seismographic Station at UC Berkeley, will begin installing 60-70 seismograph stations in the core urban areas of San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley.

December 9, 1999

Holocene muds that cover the Santa Cruz, Calif., continental shelf have enough breaks to reveal traces of the San Gregorio fault, according to scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey, who will present several papers relating to the side-scan sonar images that were obtained earlier this year.

December 8, 1999

The Moscone convention center will be alive with the sound of music, Thursday, Dec. 16, as U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Andrew Michael presents, "The Music of Earthquakes -- Waveforms of Sound and Seismology."

November 22, 1999

All offices of the U.S. Geological Survey, at 345 Middlefield Road in Menlo Park, will close at 2 p.m., Wednesday, November 24, but will be open to serve the public Friday, November 26. This includes the map sales office and the USGS library.

October 22, 1999

Southern California’s deserts have been profoundly altered since the arrival of modern civilization and it may take centuries for the harsh but fragile ecosystem to recover even with vigorous intervention to restore natural habitats, according to an article in the current issue of the journal Environmental Management.