Unified Interior Regions

Region 9: Columbia-Pacific Northwest

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Our scientists in the Columbia-Pacific Northwest Region conduct impartial, multi- and interdisciplinary research and monitoring on a large range of natural-resource issues that impact the quality of life of citizens of Idaho, Oregon, Washington and western Montana.

News

Date published: November 15, 2021

The Role of Sediment in Coastal Resiliency

The delivery and deposition of sediment along coastlines is essential to building barriers such as sandbars, dunes and marshes that protect coastal communities from storms and sea-level rise.

Date published: October 6, 2021

Queen Charlotte Fault Mapping

The Queen Charlotte Fault is an active strike-slip boundary, similar to California’s San Andreas fault.

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Date published: November 15, 2021
Status: Active

Estuaries and large river deltas in the Pacific Northwest

Essential habitat for wild salmon and other wildlife borders river deltas and estuaries in the Pacific Northwest. These estuaries also support industry, agriculture, and a large human population that’s expected to double by the year 2060, but each could suffer from more severe river floods, higher sea level, and storm surges caused by climate change.

Date published: November 5, 2021
Status: Active

Rocky Mountain Regional Snowpack Chemistry Monitoring Study

Snowpacks collect atmospheric deposition throughout the snowfall season and offer a unique opportunity to obtain a composite sample of the chemistry of most of the annual precipitation at high elevations [> 1,800 meters]. The purpose of the snowpack network is to determine annual concentrations and depositional amounts of selected nutrients and other constituents in snow resulting from...

Contacts: Graham Sexstone
Date published: October 25, 2021
Status: Active

Landscape Response to Disturbance

This project characterizes and measures sediment-related effects of landscape disturbances (such as major storms, drought, or wildfire) and river management. We focus primarily on the U.S. west coast, and our work relates to natural hazards and resource management.

Contacts: Amy East
Date published: October 15, 2021
Status: Active

Sediment Transport in Coastal Environments

Our research goals are to provide the scientific information, knowledge, and tools required to ensure that decisions about land and resource use, management practices, and future development in the coastal zone and adjacent watersheds can be evaluated with a complete understanding of the probable effects on coastal ecosystems and communities, and a full assessment of their vulnerability to...

Date published: October 15, 2021
Status: Active

U.S. West Coast and Alaska Marine Geohazards

Marine geohazards are sudden and extreme events beneath the ocean that threaten coastal populations. Such underwater hazards include earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides, and tsunamis.

Devastating earthquakes in Japan (2011) and Chile (2010) that spawned pan-oceanic tsunamis sent a sobering reminder that U.S. coastlines are also vulnerable to natural disasters that originate in...

Date published: October 4, 2021
Status: Active

Remote Sensing Coastal Change

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

Date published: September 2, 2021
Status: Active

Ecosystems: EXPRESS

The continental shelf and slope offshore California, Oregon, and Washington are home to deep-sea corals, chemosynthetic communities, and other sensitive habitats that could be impacted by the development of energy and mineral resources. The EXPRESS (Expanding Pacific Research and Exploration of Submerged Systems) campaign will map and characterize these special areas to help guide ocean...

Date published: September 1, 2021
Status: Active

Coastal Climate Impacts

The impacts of climate change and sea-level rise around the Pacific and Arctic Oceans can vary tremendously. Thus far the vast majority of national and international impact assessments and models of coastal climate change have focused on low-relief coastlines that are not near seismically active zones. Furthermore, the degree to which extreme waves and wind will add further stress to coastal...

Date published: September 1, 2021
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: July 30, 2021
Status: Active

Dynamic coastlines along the western U.S.

The west coast of the United States is extremely complex and changeable because of tectonic activity, mountain building, and land subsidence. These active environments pose a major challenge for accurately assessing climate change impacts, since models were historically developed for more passive sandy coasts.

Date published: November 12, 2020
Status: Active

White River spinedace (Lepidomeda albivallis) and White River desert suckers (Catostomus clarki) - KFFS

Species Studied

White River spinedace (Lepidomeda albivallis) and White River desert suckers (Catostomus clarki)

Contacts: Summer Burdick
Date published: November 12, 2020
Status: Active

Pahranagat roundtail chub (Gila robusta) - KFFS

Species Studied

Pahranagat roundtail chub (Gila robusta)

Contacts: Barbara Martin
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Date published: May 25, 2021

Modeled extreme total water levels along the U.S. west coast

This dataset contains information on the probabilities of storm-induced erosion (collision, inundation and overwash) for each 100-meter (m) section of the United States Pacific coast for return period storm scenarios. The analysis is based on a storm-impact scaling model that uses observations of beach morphology combined with sophisticated hydrodynamic models to predict how the coast will...

Date published: January 18, 2021

Cyanobacterial toxin effects on inflammatory response of human toll-like receptors (TLRs)

Various stressors including temperature, environmental chemicals and toxins can have profound impacts on immunity to pathogens. It is believed that increased eutrophication near rivers and lakes coupled with climate change are predicted to lead to increased algal blooms. Currently, the effects of cyanobacterial toxins on disease resistance in mammals is a largely unexplored area of research....

Date published: August 12, 2020

CTD profiles and discrete water-column measurements collected off California and Oregon during NOAA cruise RL-19-05 (USGS field activity 2019-672-FA) from October to November 2019

Various water column variables, including salinity, dissolved inorganic nutrients, pH, total alkalinity, dissolved inorganic carbon, were measured in samples collected using a Niskin-bottle rosette at selected depths from sites offshore of California and Oregon from October to November 2019 during NOAA cruise RL-19-05 on R/V Reuben Lasker (USGS field activity 2019-672-FA). CTD data were also...

Date published: June 9, 2020

SPARROW Mappers for the 2012 SPARROW Models for the Pacific region

SPARROW mappers are interactive tools that allow users to explore river streamflow and nutrient and sediment loads and yields and the importance of different sources of contaminants in a particular river basin. Data can be visualized using maps and interactive graphs and tables, and rankings can be shown by state, major watershed, hydrologic unit (HUC), and catchment.

Date published: September 26, 2019

Data for assessing the susceptibility of groundwater used for drinking water supply from selected principal aquifers of the Western United States, 2004-2018

Groundwater age distribution and susceptibility to natural and anthropogenic contaminants were assessed for selected principal aquifers of the Western United States: the Central Valley aquifer system (CVAL), the Basin and Range basin-fill aquifers (BNRF), the Rio Grande aquifer system (RIOG), the High Plains aquifer (HPAQ), the Columbia Plateau basaltic-rock aquifers (

Date published: September 6, 2019

Drainage basins and characteristics for selected streamgages within the Southern Rockies Landscape Conservation Cooperative domain

Streamflow and basin-characteristic data are needed for a variety of scientific applications including estimation of flow in ungaged basins and hydro-ecological classification of rivers. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Bureau of Reclamation and the Southern Rockies Landscape Conservation Cooperative (SRLCC), selected a subset of streamgages across the SRLC

Date published: September 5, 2019

Geodetic Data for USGS Benchmark Glaciers: Orthophotos, Digital Elevation Models, and Glacier Boundaries

Since the late 1950s, the USGS has maintained a long-term glacier mass-balance program at three North American glaciers. Measurements began on South Cascade Glacier, WA in 1958, expanding to Gulkana and Wolverine glaciers, AK in 1966, and later Sperry Glacier, MT in 2005. Additional measurements have been made on Lemon Creek Glacier, AK to compliment data collected by the Juneau Ice

Date published: July 16, 2019

High Altitude Weather Station Data at USGS Benchmark Glaciers

Since the late 1950s, the USGS has maintained a long-term glacier mass-balance program at three North American glaciers. Measurements began on South Cascade Glacier, WA in 1958, expanding to Gulkana and Wolverine glaciers, AK in 1966, and later Sperry Glacier, MT in 2005. Additional measurements have been made on Lemon Creek Glacier, AK to compliment data collected by the Juneau Ice

Date published: June 10, 2019

Beach topography and nearshore bathymetry of the Columbia River littoral cell, Washington and Oregon

This data release presents beach topography and nearshore bathymetry data from repeated surveys performed by a team of scientists from the USGS, Washington State Department of Ecology, and Oregon State University in the Columbia River littoral cell (CRLC), Washington and Oregon. The CRLC extends approximately 165 kilometers between Point Grenville, WA, and Tillamook, OR.

Date published: April 19, 2019

Puget Sound Real-Time Water-Level Data

The chart shows the most recent 7 days of data at all Puget Sound water level sites with available data. Use mouse scroll wheel to zoom and drag to pan. Sites include Bellingham, Oak Harbor, Edmonds, Lofall, Steilacoom, and Olympia.

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CITE
January 10, 2018

Scientists at WERC's Dixon Field station have fitted Cinnamon Teal with GPS backpacks. Using R, the telemetry locations are displayed on an image every two weeks.

CITE
January 10, 2018

Scientists at WERC's Dixon Field station have fitted Cinnamon Teal with GPS backpacks. Using R, the telemetry locations are displayed on an image every two weeks.

CITE
January 10, 2018

Scientists at WERC's Dixon Field station have fitted Cinnamon Teal with GPS backpacks. Using R, the telemetry locations are displayed on an image every two weeks.

Digital Elevation Model in the Atchafalaya Basin, LA
April 19, 2016

The 3DEP products and services available through The National Map consist of standard digital elevation models (DEMs) at various horizontal resolutions, elevation source and associated datasets, an elevation point query service and bulk point query service. All 3DEP products are available, free of charge and without use restrictions.

Klamath lake landsat
February 1, 2010

The image is a mosaic of nine scenes from Landsat 5 at a resolution of 30 meters on 07/22/2005, 08/26/2006, 06/17/2007, 07/05/2007, 08/18/2009, 08/27/2009, and 09/26/2009.

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multicolored map of Ocean Shores, Washington
April 13, 2017

The Pedestrian Evacuation Analyst is an ArcGIS extension that estimates how long it would take for someone to travel on foot out of a hazardous area that was threatened by a sudden event such as a tsunami, flash flood, or volcanic lahar. It takes into account the elevation changes and the different types of landcover that a person would encounter along the way.

Hailey, Idaho
August 22, 2016

The R package wrv is for processing the groundwater-flow model of the Wood River Valley (WRV) aquifer system, south-central Idaho. The groundwater-flow model is described in the associated model report and model archive. Included in the package is MODFLOW-USG version 1.3, a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) computer code that solves the groundwater-flow equation.

Upper Klamath Lake
April 3, 2013

The Shoreline Management Tool—An ArcMap Tool for Analyzing Water Depth, Inundated Area, Volume, and Selected Habitats, with an Example for the Lower Wood River Valley, Oregon

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map with hexagon grid overlay depicting study areas and points depicting barred owl sightings in 2015
October 4, 2021

Barred owl sightings at Oregon Coast Range monitoring sites, 2015

Locations of barred owl sightings recorded during 2015 owl monitoring activities. Barred owls were lethally removed from the areas highlighted in pink. Supporting data is found at https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201089.

map with hexagon grid overlay depicting study areas and points depicting barred owl sightings in 2020
October 4, 2021

Barred owl sightings at Oregon Coast Range monitoring sites, 2020

Locations of barred owl sightings recorded during 2020 owl monitoring activities. Barred owls were lethally removed from the areas highlighted in pink. Supporting data is found at https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201089.

arrows pointing to northern spotted owl territory and the movement of barred owl west and its present day territory
October 4, 2021

Barred owl movement west

Barred owls spread west during the 1900s and today completely overlap the range of the northern spotted owl.

Blue River cableway and stream gage
September 17, 2020

Cableway and stream gage on Blue River, OR

Cableway (foreground) and stream gage (background) on Blue River at Blue River, Oregon (Site number 14162200)

North Santiam River cableway
September 16, 2020

Cableway on North Santiam River at Niagara, Oregon

Cableway on North Santiam River at Niagara, Oregon (Site number 14181500)

Blue River stream gage
September 15, 2020

Stream gage on Blue River at Blue River, Oregon

Stream gage on Blue River at Blue River, Oregon, (Site number 14162200)

McKenzie River stream gage
September 15, 2020

Stream gage on McKenzie River near Vida, Oregon

Stream gage on McKenzie River near Vida, Oregon (Site number 14162500) 

South Fork McKenzie River stream gage
September 15, 2020

Stream gage on South Fork McKenzie River near Rainbow, Oregon

Stream gage on South Fork McKenzie River near Rainbow, Oregon (Site number 14159500)

man holding microphone
August 25, 2020

USGS Director Jim Reilly gives a speech

The USGS Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center (FRESC) held a groundbreaking ceremony on August 25, 2020 at the Idaho Water Science Center (IDWSC) in Boise, Idaho. FRESC is moving their Snake River Field Station, presently located on the Boise State University campus, to the IDWSC campus and building a new facility for the USGS Pacific Northwest environmental DNA

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A man and woman wearing cloth face coverings and setting up equipment
June 26, 2020

Setting up a bat acoustic monitoring station

White-nose syndrome has been detected in Washington. USGS scientist are helping the NPS design and evaluate bat sampling protocols for their Pacific Northwest parks.

Verifying Bridge Scour Sonar Accuracy
May 21, 2020

Verifying Bridge Scour Sonar Accuracy

Hydrologic technician Russ Miller navigates a remote-controlled acoustic Doppler current profiler into position to measure streeambed elevation at a highway bridge over the Payette River near Letha, Idaho. Technicians from the USGS Idaho Water Science Center used the ADCP measurements to verify the accuracy of two sonar devices installed on the bridge that transmit real-

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Two people float in a small boat in a calm inner channel of a marshy area.
November 15, 2021

The delivery and deposition of sediment along coastlines is essential to building barriers such as sandbars, dunes and marshes that protect coastal communities from storms and sea-level rise.

map
September 9, 2021

Residents and visitors should not be alarmed to see a low-flying helicopter over Lemhi and Custer Counties west of Salmon, Idaho from September 6 to October 18, 2021. 

Color photograph of person in colorful shirt in front of rock wall
May 12, 2021

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — On May 9, 2021, Christina (Tina) Neal became the new director of the U.S. Geological Survey Volcano Science Center, home of the Alaska, California, Cascades, Hawaiian and Yellowstone volcano observatories.  

Earthquake Early Warning Basics
May 4, 2021

After 15 years of planning and development, the ShakeAlert earthquake early warning system is now available to more than 50 million people in California, Oregon and Washington, the most earthquake-prone region in the conterminous U.S.

Map of the glacial aquifer locations in the United States
April 27, 2021

New 3-dimensional models predict where high concentrations of arsenic and manganese are likely to occur in the glacial aquifer system, reports a new study from the U.S. Geological Survey National Water Quality Program. The glacial aquifer system, which underlies parts of 25 states across the northern U.S., supplies groundwater for about 30 million people.

Photo looking down on the rocky coastline of Oregon from high up on a cliff, with breaking ocean waves on rocks.
February 16, 2021

Starting May 4, 2021, ShakeAlert®-powered earthquake early warning alerts will be available to more than 50 million people in California, Oregon and Washington, the most earthquake-prone region in the conterminous U.S.

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