Unified Interior Regions

Washington

Washington's Puget Sound is a complex ecosystem directly adjacent to a robust metropolitan area that scientists from the USGS Western Fisheries Research Center study. Recent surveys have looked at juvenile surf smelt, a key link in the food web that are consumed by predators such as salmon, orca, and many marine birds. 

Western Fisheries Research Center

Western Fisheries Research Center

Research at the WFRC focuses on the environmental factors responsible for the creation, maintenance, and regulation of fish populations including their interactions in aquatic communities and ecosystems. 

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Washington Water Science Center

Washington Water Science Center

The Water Science Center's mission is to collect, analyze and disseminate the impartial hydrologic data and information needed to wisely manage water resources for the people of the United States and the State of Washington.

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States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Washington's Puget Sound is a complex ecosystem directly adjacent to a robust metropolitan area that scientists from the USGS Western Fisheries Research Center study. Recent surveys have looked at juvenile surf smelt, a key link in the food web that are consumed by predators such as salmon, orca, and many marine birds. 

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 21, 2021

Media Alert: Low-Flying Airplane Mapping Parts of the Central Cascade Range in Southern Washington and Northern Oregon

Residents should not be alarmed if they see a low-flying airplane over parts of southern Washington and northern Oregon starting October 21, 2021.

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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: October 19, 2021
Status: Active

Aquifer Recharge Study and Water-Budget Components of San Juan County, Washington

The Issue: San Juan County encompasses an archipelago within the Salish Sea between the southeastern end of Vancouver Island, British Columbia and Skagit and Whatcom Counties on mainland western Washington. Although the year-round population is generally small (approximately 16,000 in 2010), there is an ever-growing influx of visitors to the scenic islands especially during...

Contacts: Elise Wright
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 13, 2021
Status: Active

Aquifer Recharge Area Study of Guemes Island

The Issue: Guemes Island is an 8.2-square-mile island in the northern part of Puget Sound in western Washington State. The population of the island is increasing, as is the demand for groundwater, which is the island's sole source of freshwater. Continued growth and development of the island, particularly in nearshore areas, has led to the increasing failure of nearshore wells...

Contacts: Leland Fuhrig
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 29, 2021
Status: Active

Coastal Habitats in Puget Sound

A Pacific Northwest icon, Puget Sound is the second-largest estuary in the United States. Its unique geology, climate, and nutrient-rich waters produce and sustain biologically productive coastal habitats. These same natural characteristics also contribute to a high quality of life that has led to growth in human population and urbanization. This growth has played a role in degrading the Sound...

Date published: September 15, 2021
Status: Active

PS-CoSMoS: Puget Sound Coastal Storm Modeling System

The CoSMoS model is currently available for most of the California coast and is now being expanded to support the 4.5 million coastal residents of the Puget Sound region, with emphasis on the communities bordering the sound.

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: August 23, 2021
Status: Active

Hazards: EXPRESS

Marine geohazards including earthquakes, landslides, and tsunamis lie offshore of densely populated areas of California, Oregon, and Washington. One goal of EXPRESS is to improve assessments of these hazards.

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Date published: September 30, 2021

Eelgrass distributions and bathymetry of Bellingham Bay, Washington, 2019

This data release presents eelgrass distributions and bathymetry data derived from acoustic surveys of Bellingham Bay, Washington. Survey operations were conducted between February 16 and February 21, 2019 by a team of scientists from the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center and Washington State Department of Ecology. Eelgrass and bathymetry data were collected from R/V George...

Date published: September 15, 2021

Aerial imagery and structure-from-motion data products from UAS survey of the intertidal zone at West Whidbey Island, WA, June 2019

An unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used to acquire high-resolution imagery of the intertidal zone at West Whidbey Island, Washington on June 4, 2019.  This imagery was processed using structure-from-motion (SfM) photogrammetric techniques to derive a high-resolution digital surface model (DSM), orthomosaic imagery, and topographic point clouds. In order to maximize the extent of the 

Date published: September 15, 2021

Aerial imagery and structure-from-motion data products from UAS survey of the intertidal zone at Lone Tree Point, Kiket Bay, WA, June 2019

An unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used to acquire high-resolution imagery of the intertidal zone at Lone Tree Point, Kiket Bay, Washington on June 5, 2019.  This imagery was processed using structure-from-motion (SfM) photogrammetric techniques to derive a high-resolution digital surface model (DSM), orthomosaic imagery, and topographic point clouds. In order to maximize the extent of the ...

Date published: June 1, 2021

Evaluating injury and mortality to larval lamprey collected out of sediment using a portable suction dredge

Dataset describes the findings of a combination of field and laboratory tests to see if larval lamprey were injured or killed after they were collected from their burrows in sediment using a portable suction dredge.

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: April 9, 2021

Hydrodynamic model of the lower Columbia River, Washington and Oregon, 2017-2020

A three-dimensional hydrodynamic model of the lower Columbia River (LCR) was constructed using the Delft3D Flexible Mesh (DFM) modeling suite to simulate water levels, flow, and seabed stresses between January 1, 2017, and April 20, 2020.

Date published: February 22, 2021

Aerial imagery and structure-from-motion data products from UAS survey of the intertidal zone at Puget Creek and Dickman Mill Park, Ruston Way, Tacoma, WA, June 2019

An unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used to acquire high-resolution imagery of the intertidal zone at Puget Creek and Dickman Mill Park in Tacoma, Washington on June 3, 2019. This imagery was processed using structure-from-motion (SfM) photogrammetric techniques to derive high-resolution digital surface models (DSM), orthomosaic imagery, and topographic point clouds.

Date published: February 22, 2021

Aerial imagery and structure-from-motion data products from UAS survey of the intertidal zone at Post Point, Bellingham Bay, WA, June 2019

An unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used to acquire high-resolution imagery of the intertidal zone at Post Point in Bellingham Bay, Washington on June 6, 2019. This imagery was processed using structure-from-motion (SfM) photogrammetric techniques to derive high-resolution digital surface models (DSM), orthomosaic imagery, and topographic point clouds.

Date published: February 22, 2021

Verified Irrigated Agricultural Lands for the United States, 2002-17

The spatial extents of verified irrigated lands were compiled from various federal and state sources across the nation and combined into a single Geographic Information System (GIS) geodatabase for the purpose of model training and validation.

Date published: February 5, 2021

An Unvegetated to Vegetated Ratio (UVVR) for coastal wetlands of the Conterminous United States (2014-2018)

This USGS Data Release represents geospatial data sets which were created to produce an Unvegetated to Vegetated Ratio (UVVR) for coastal wetlands of the conterminous United States (2014-2018).

Date published: January 22, 2021

Multichannel minisparker, multichannel boomer, and chirp seismic-reflection data of USGS field activity 2017-612-FA collected in Puget Sound and Lake Washington in February of 2017

High-resolution multichannel minisparker, multichannel boomer and chirp seismic-reflection data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey and the University of Washington in February of 2017 west of Seattle in Puget Sound and in Lake Washington, Washington. Data were collected aboard University of Washington's R/V Clifford A. Barnes during USGS field activity 2017-612-FA.

Date published: January 22, 2021

Chirp sub-bottom data of USGS field activity K0211PS collected in Puget Sound, Washington in April of 2011

High-resolution chirp sub-bottom data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in April 2011 south of Bainbridge Island and west of Seattle in Puget Sound, Washington. Data were collected aboard R/V Karluk during field activity K0211PS using an Edgetech SB-512i sub-bottom profiler. Sub-bottom acoustic penetration spans several tens of meters and is variable by location.

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Underwater photograph showing deep-water corals growing on a rocky area.
May 25, 2021

Less than 20% of the world's oceans have been explored. A global initiative seeks to change that, by pledging to complete detailed mapping of 10% of the seafloor by the year 2030. The United States is contributing to this effort in part through a collaborative team of federal, state, and nongovernment organizations to map, explore, and characterize waters along the US Pacific coast...

Naturally Occurring Uranium in Groundwater in Northeastern Washington State
May 27, 2020

Uranium is a radioactive element (radionuclide) that occurs naturally in rock, soil, and water – usually in low concentrations. Radionuclides are unstable atoms with excess energy and as radionuclides decay, they emit radiation. The uranium decay sequence also includes other radionuclides of concern such as radium and radon (DeSimone and others, 2014).

Black and grey map of the contiguous 48 states shaded by the number of people using domestic wells per square kilometer (2010)
April 23, 2020

Domestic wells provide drinking water supply for approximately 40 million people in the United States. Knowing the location of these wells, and the populations they serve, is important for identifying heavily used aquifers, locations susceptible to contamination, and populations potentially impacted by poor-quality groundwater. 

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.

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Year Published: 2021

Geologic controls of slow-moving landslides near the U.S. West Coast

Slow-moving landslides, often with nearly imperceptible creeping motion, are an important landscape shaper and a dangerous natural hazard across the globe, yet their spatial distribution and geologic controls are still poorly known owing to a paucity of detailed, large-area observations. Here, we use interferometry of L-band satellite radar images...

Xu, Yuankun; Schulz, William; Lu, Zhong; Kim, Jinwook; Baxstrom, Kelli Wadsworth

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Year Published: 2021

Evaluation of factors affecting migration success of adult sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in the Yakima River, Washington, 2020

A study was conducted during June–October 2020 to evaluate factors affecting the migration success of adult sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in the Yakima River, Washington. A total of 144 adult sockeye salmon were tagged and released during the study. Most fish (112 fish) were collected, tagged with passive integrated transponder (PIT), and...

Kock, Tobias J.; Hansen, Amy C.; Evans, Scott D.; Visser, Richard; Saluskin, Brian; Matala, Andrew; Hoffarth, Paul
Kock, T.J., Hansen, A.C., Evans, S.D., Visser, R., Saluskin, B., Matala, A., and Hoffarth, P., 2021, Evaluation of factors affecting migration success of adult sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in the Yakima River, Washington, 2020: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2021–1075, 30 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20211075.

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Year Published: 2021

Taxonomic, temporal, and spatial variations in zooplankton fatty acid composition in Puget Sound, WA, USA

Fatty acid (FA) content and composition of zooplankton in Puget Sound, Washington (USA) was studied to investigate the nutritional quality of diverse zooplankton prey for juvenile salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) in terms of their essential fatty acid (EFA) content. The study focus was on eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and...

Hiltunen, Minna; Strandberg, Ursula; Brett, Michael T.; Winans, Amanda K.; Beauchamp, David; Kotila, Miika; Keister, Julie E.

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Year Published: 2021

When hazard avoidance is not an option: Lessons learned from monitoring the postdisaster Oso landslide, USA

On 22 March 2014, a massive, catastrophic landslide occurred near Oso, Washington, USA, sweeping more than 1 km across the adjacent valley flats and killing 43 people. For the following 5 weeks, hundreds of workers engaged in an exhaustive search, rescue, and recovery effort directly in the landslide runout path. These workers could not avoid the...

Reid, Mark E.; Godt, Jonathan W.; LaHusen, Richard G; Slaughter, Stephen L; Badger, Thomas C.; Collins, Brian D.; Schulz, William; Baum, Rex L.; Coe, Jeffrey A.; Harp, Edwin L; Schmidt, Kevin; Iverson, Richard M.; Smith, Joel B.; Haugerud, Ralph; George, David L.

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Year Published: 2021

Investigation of otolith microstructure and composition for identification of rearing strategies and associated Baker Lake sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) smolt production, Washington, 2016–17

Baker River (Washington, USA) sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) are a recovering Puget Sound stock that are aided by trap-and-haul and hatchery programs to mitigate for the presence of a high head dam. The relative contribution of hatchery and natural adults to overall production of smolts and recruits is unknown. The ability to identify three...

Larsen, Kimberly A.; Wetzel, Lisa A.; Stenberg, Karl D.; Lind-Null, Angie M.
Larsen, K.A., Wetzel, L.A., Stenberg, K.D., and Lind-Null, A.M., 2021, Investigation of otolith microstructure and composition for identification of rearing strategies and associated Baker Lake sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) smolt production, Washington, 2016–17: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2021–1032, 15 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20211032.

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Year Published: 2021

Calcium concentrations in the lower Columbia River, USA, are generally sufficient to support invasive bivalve spread

Dissolved calcium concentration [Ca2+] is thought to be a major factor limiting the establishment and thus the spread of invasive bivalves such as zebra (Dreissena polymorpha) and quagga (Dreissena bugensis) mussels. We measured [Ca2+] in 168 water samples collected along ~100 river-km of the lower Columbia River, USA, between June 2018 and March...

Bollens, Stephen M.; Harrison, John A.; Kramer, Marc G.; Rollwagen-Bollens, Gretchen; Counihan, Timothy; Robb-Chavez, Salvador B.; Nolan, Sean T.

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Year Published: 2021

Artificial lights with different spectra do not alter detrimental attraction of young Chinook salmon and sockeye salmon along lake shorelines

Artificial light at night (ALAN) is common in lakes with developed shorelines, especially prevalent in the nearshore areas where juvenile fishes, including salmonids, are present. One concern is that fishes may be attracted to ALAN and become more vulnerable to predators. The use of longer wavelength lights has been suggested to reduce the effects...

Tabor, Roger A. ; Perkin, Elizabeth K; Beauchamp, David; Britt, Lyle L.; Haehn, Rebecca; Greene, John A.; Robinson, Timothy J.; Stolnack, Scott; Lantz, Daniel W; Moore, Zachary J

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Year Published: 2021

Virulence and infectivity of UC, MD and L strains of infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV) in four populations of Columbia River Basin Chinook salmon

Infectious Hematopoietic Necrosis Virus (IHNV) infects juvenile salmonid fish in conservation hatcheries and aquaculture facilities, and in some cases, causes lethal disease. This study assesses intra-specific variation in the IHNV susceptibility of Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in the Columbia River Basin (CRB), in the northwestern...

Hernandez, Daniel G.; Brown, William E.; Naish, Kerry A.; Kurath, Gael

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Year Published: 2021

Expected warning times from the ShakeAlert earthquake early warning system for earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest

The ShakeAlert® earthquake early warning system has been live since October 2019 for the testing of public alerting to mobile devices in California and will soon begin testing this modality in Oregon and Washington. The Pacific Northwest presents new challenges and opportunities for ShakeAlert owing to the different types of earthquakes that occur...

McGuire, Jeffrey J.; Smith, Deborah E.; Frankel, Arthur D.; Wirth, Erin A.; McBride, Sara K.; de Groot, Robert M.
McGuire, J.J., Smith, D.E., Frankel, A.D., Wirth, E.A., McBride, S.K., and de Groot, R.M., 2021, Expected warning times from the ShakeAlert earthquake early warning system for earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest (ver. 1.1, March 24, 2021): U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2021–1026, 37 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20211026.

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Year Published: 2021

Preconditioning by sediment accumulation can produce powerful turbidity currents without major external triggers

Turbidity currents dominate sediment transfer into the deep ocean, and can damage critical seabed infrastructure. It is commonly inferred that powerful turbidity currents are triggered by major external events, such as storms, river floods, or earthquakes. However, basic models for turbidity current triggering remain poorly tested, with few...

Bailey, Lewis; Clare, Michael; Rosenberger, Kurt J.; Cartigny, Matthieu J.B.; Talling, Peter J.; Paull, Charles K.; Gwiazda, Roberto; Parsons, Daniel; Simmons, Stephen; Xu, Jingping; Haigh, Ivan; Maier, Katherine L.; McGann, Mary; Lundsten, Eve M.

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Year Published: 2021

Long-term changes in kelp forests in an inner basin of the Salish Sea

Kelp forests form an important biogenic habitat that responds to natural and human drivers. Global concerns exist about threats to kelp forests, yet long-term information is limited and research suggests that trends are geographically distinct. We examined distribution of the bull kelp Nereocystis luetkeana over 145 years in South Puget...

Berry, H.D.; Mumford, T.F.; Calloway, M.; Ferrier, L.; Christiaen, B.; vanArendonk, Nathan R.; Grossman, Eric E.; Dowty, P.

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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.

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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.

July 21, 2021

Washington Geological Survey’s Landslide Hazard Program

In 2015, the Washington Geological Survey received legislative funding to start a Landslide Hazards Program (LHP). The LHP has three primary functions: landslide inventory mapping, post-wildfire debris flow assessments, and emergency response. This presentation will include an overview of the LHP and our products and discuss how the program has evolved over the last 6

July 1, 2021

Monthly update of activity at Yellowstone Volcano for June 2021

From the boardwalk near Echinus Geyser (the largest acid geyser in the world), Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge Mike Poland provides an update on activity in Yellowstone during the month of June. The Yellowstone Seismic Network located 445 earthquakes in the Yellowstone National Park region. Subsidence of Yellowstone Caldera, which has been ongoing since

June 24, 2021

PubTalk - 6/2021: Mount St. Helens Revisited

Title: Mount St. Helens Revisited: Lives Changed, Lessons Learned, and Legacies of the 1980 Eruptions

By Carolyn Driedger, USGS Hydrologist & Outreach Specialist

  • Mount St. Helens' eruptions had a disproportionately large influence on our understanding of volcanoes, hazards, and eruption response.
  • Unique circumstances, both locally and abroad
Attribution: Mount St. Helens
Field team installs scanning DOAS at Mount St. Helens
June 16, 2021

Field team installs scanning DOAS at Mount St. Helens

USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory Physical Science Technician Brian Meyers installs a data telemetry antenna on a volcano monitoring station at Mount St. Helens. A DOAS scanner is mounted above the flat-panel antenna at the top of the mast. A fiber optic cables transmits the light collected by the DOAS scanner to a spectrometer inside the fiberglass hut. Data is

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May 13, 2021

Status of (mostly) WA Volcanoes: Report to Emergency Managers 2020-21

Jon Major, scientist-in-charge of the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory, provides an overview of the major volcano hazards in the Cascades, the function and responsibilities of the Cascades Volcano Observatory, and a brief synopsis of what's been going on at Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, Mount Rainier, Mount Adams, Mount St. Helens, and Mount Hood, and CVO’s plans in coming

Washington State Governor Proclaims May 2021 as Volcano Awareness Month
April 30, 2021

Washington State Governor Proclaims May 2021 as Volcano Awareness Mont

Washington State Governor Proclaims May 2021 as Volcano Awareness Month.

April 20, 2021

Mitigating Hazards at Cascade Range Volcanoes

The 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens was monumental in so many different ways. It had a huge impact on the geography of southwestern Washington, ash affected many people, lives were lost, and lessons were learned. The eruption also led to the creation of the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory in Vancouver, Washington. Seth Moran talks about three of CVO’s mission areas—

Two map illustrations show the mouth of a river along a westward-facing coastline and its computer model of water depth.
April 9, 2021

Map of model bathymetry, Columbia River

A three-dimensional hydrodynamic model of the lower Columbia River (LCR) was constructed using the Delft3D Flexible Mesh (DFM) modeling suite to simulate water levels, flow, and seabed stresses between January 1, 2017, and April 20, 2020

April 6, 2021

CVO Monitoring Program: Keeping an Eye on Cascade Volcanoes

The good news is that volcanoes usually change behavior before they erupt, in ways that are detectable by monitoring instruments. During times of relative quiet, scientists use different sensors and instruments to help visualize and quantify the structures and processes that are occurring beneath a volcano so they can provide a better estimate of what might happen when a

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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.

survey area Columbia River
October 21, 2021

Residents should not be alarmed if they see a low-flying airplane over parts of southern Washington and northern Oregon starting October 21, 2021.

Field team installs scanning DOAS at Mount St. Helens
June 23, 2021

The combination of a continuous MultiGAS station within Mount St. Helens' crater and the new scanning DOAS represents state-of-the-art in geochemical monitoring.

Scientist standing next to solar panels on monitoring station with snowy mountain in the background.
June 2, 2021

Expansion of the lahar detection system at Mount Rainier will improve the Cascades Volcano Observatory's overall volcano monitoring and lahar detection capacity and provide more rapid notification to the immediate area and surrounding communities.  

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.  

Washington State Governor Proclaims May 2021 as Volcano Awareness Month
May 10, 2021

May is Volcano Awareness Month in Washington State, providing residents an opportunity to become more familiar with volcanic hazards in their communities and learn about steps they can take to reduce potential impacts.

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.

Mount St. Helens, Washington
March 25, 2021

The USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory joins the Whidbey Reads program to offer virtual talks about Mount St. Helens' May 18, 1980 eruption, and how the volcano has shaped the study of volcanoes and volcano monitoring.

Dr. Jon Major, Scientist-in-Charge of the U.S. Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory.
January 14, 2021

The U.S. Geological Survey is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Jon Major to serve as the new Scientist-in-Charge of the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory.

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Western Fisheries Research Center

Western Fisheries Research Center

Research at the WFRC focuses on the environmental factors responsible for the creation, maintenance, and regulation of fish populations including their interactions in aquatic communities and ecosystems. 

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Washington Water Science Center

Washington Water Science Center

The Water Science Center's mission is to collect, analyze and disseminate the impartial hydrologic data and information needed to wisely manage water resources for the people of the United States and the State of Washington.

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