The U.S. Geological Survey will award up to $4 million in grants for earthquake hazards research in 2014.
"The USGS has a long-standing grants program that has supported fresh and cutting-edge ideas all in an effort to reduce earthquake losses and protect communities," said USGS Senior Science Advisor Bill Leith. "We are looking forward to seeing the new proposals for 2014 and continuing to invest in innovative projects from experts across the nation and the world."
Interested researchers can apply online at GRANTS.GOV under funding opportunity number G13AS00029. Applications are due June 6, 2013.
Each year the USGS awards earthquake hazards research grants to universities, state geological surveys and private institutions. Past projects included cataloging earthquakes in southern California to better prepare emergency responders, the public and the media about earthquakes; providing seismic hazard estimates so communities and critical institutions can engineer their buildings and roads to be structurally sound; and analyzing data on ground shaking to help minimize damage.
A complete list of funded projects and reports can be found on the USGS Earthquake Hazards Program external research support website.
PORTLAND, Ore. — The U.S. Geological Survey has developed the "Shoreline Management Tool," a GIS software program designed to test ways of managing land and water resources adjacent to a lake or stream. The new software tool will help water-, land-, and wildlife-resource managers balance competing needs when managing surface-water levels for water quantity, water depth, area of inundation, and area of dry land. These factors relate directly to water supply, water quality, shoreline habitat for plants and animals, and human use of water and land areas.
Assessing the effects of changing surface-water levels historically has been difficult because of the complexity of the analysis. The management tool enables the user to define criteria such as water depth and land-surface slope and aspect to identify areas where conditions meet the needs for certain land or water uses or that provide habitat suitable for specific plants and animals.
The tool comprises an interactive GIS program and spreadsheets that allow users to specify the input data and criteria for analysis, process the data, and create results in the form of maps, data tables, and graphs. The tool is designed for use by natural-resource managers with only limited expertise with GIS.
Although the tool was initially developed to evaluate conditions in the lower Wood River Valley in the upper Klamath Basin, Oregon, it is designed to be transferable to other areas using easily generated or readily available data.
The Shoreline Management Tool was conceived and developed by the USGS with cooperation from the Bureau of Land Management.
The program is documented in the report, "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," by Daniel T. Snyder, Tana L. Haluska, and Darius Respini-Irwin, is published as U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2012–1247 and is available online.
Water Quality Differences Affect Aquatic Health of Urban Streams in Kansas City and Independence, Missouri
Downstream areas of the Blue River and Little Blue River basins are highly affected by urban development, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study that compares the aquatic-life status of streams in the Kansas City, Mo. metropolitan area using macroinvertebrate populations as an indicator of stream health.
This study increases our understanding of aquatic life and water quality in urban streams. The differences in aquatic-life status of the Blue River and Little Blue River indicate how stormwater, wastewater discharges, and upstream reservoirs affect urban streams.
Macroinvertebrates, or animals without a backbone that are visible to the unaided eye, were collected in the Blue River basin in Kansas City, Mo., and the Little Blue River and Rock Creek basins in Independence, Mo., as part of two urban water-quality studies to assess the aquatic-life status of urban streams. Aquatic macroinvertebrates, which include insects, worms, mussels, and crayfish, are at the base of the food chain in aquatic environments. They are the main food source for many other animals such as fish and ducks, so scientists commonly use them to study the ability of a stream to support aquatic life.
"None of the samples collected from the Blue River had characteristics considered to be fully able to support aquatic life," said USGS co-author Heather Krempa. "However, about one out of ten spring samples and about four out of ten fall samples from the Little Blue River did have characteristics considered to be fully supporting of aquatic life."
Macroinvertebrate samples were collected from streams and analyzed several ways, including counting the total number and types of macroinvertebrates collected, grouping them based on feeding methods, and calculating the tolerance of the macroinvertebrates to pollution and environmental stress. Samples were scored to provide information about the stream at the sample location and were compared among sites. The aquatic-life status scores for the Little Blue River and its tributaries were higher, indicating more optimal conditions, than for the Blue River and its tributaries.
A Stream Condition Index that combines several different measures of macroinvertebrate populations was used to describe and assign three categories to the stream sites: non-, partially, and fully biologically supporting.
Wastewater-treatment plant discharges during low flows and combined sewer overflows into the Blue River lower aquatic-life scores and likely reduce water quality. Separate stormwater sewer system and reservoir releases to the Little Blue River may raise water quality and aquatic-life scores.
The study, "Assessment of Macroinvertebrate Communities in Adjacent Urban Stream Basins, Kansas City, Missouri, Metropolitan Area, 2007 through 2011," has been released as USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2012-5284 and is available online.
Editors: The BaSE tool and supporting documentation can be found online.
NEW CUMBERLAND, Pa. -- Water resource managers can now estimate daily baseline streamflows in a matter of minutes for any location along Pennsylvania's waterways. The Baseline Streamflow Estimator, called "BaSE," provides users with estimated daily mean streamflow, minimally altered by human activities, for locations on Pennsylvania streams that don’t have streamgages. Pennsylvania is one of the first states in the nation to have such a tool.
"BaSE provides water-resource managers with nearly 50 years of daily mean streamflow for ungaged sites in a matter of minutes that they can use for their projects. These daily values can then be used to generate a number of streamflow statistics that may be needed for decision making," said Marla Stuckey, USGS hydrologist and project lead in Pennsylvania.
Water-resource managers use daily mean streamflow to evaluate withdrawal, allocation, and wastewater permit applications and to assess the health of the Commonwealth's streams. Historically, it has been difficult, costly, and time intensive to estimate daily mean streamflow for stream locations that were not gaged, or monitored. Now, BaSE allows users to estimate daily mean streamflow values and daily hydrographs by entering a few basic basin characteristics in an easy-to-use tool. The output is a summary spreadsheet, containing information about the location of interest, including daily mean streamflow for every day from 1960 to 2008.
BaSE relies on a methodology that uses flow-duration curves, which illustrate the percentage of time, or probability, that a flow value in a stream will equal or exceed a particular value. Flow-duration curves are generated for reference streamgage locations with monitored streamflow and the curves are transferred to ungaged locations to estimate daily mean streamflow.
BaSE chooses the most appropriate reference streamgage for the ungaged location and applies newly developed regression equations to convert the transferred flow duration curve to streamflow at the ungaged location.
A USGS Scientific Investigations Report describing BaSE can be found online.
The joint 2013 The National Map Users Conference and Community for Data Integration Workshop will be held on May 20 – 24, 2013 in Denver, Colorado. The event will bring together scientists, partners, managers, and data users to share relevant accomplishments and progress through presentations, workshops, training, posters, and informal gatherings.
Invited guests and representatives from the Department of the Interior (DOI), USGS, and other organizations will provide perspectives on goals, strategic direction, science needs, and training on geospatial science and related activities.
Please consider participating by submitting an abstract that addresses one of the Conference or Workshop session themes. Abstracts should address (1) experiences based on use of The National Map data theme or application and (2) data integration issues, planning, and execution in support of science, including products and tools to help users find, get, and use data for conducting interdisciplinary studies.
Abstract Instructions and Schedule
- Abstracts must be submitted through this online form NO LATER THAN February 22, 2013.
- Authors will be notified of acceptance by April 1, 2013.
- Abstracts are limited to 400 words or less.
Submit today, and we hope to see you in Denver. Questions?