USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program
Recent News - stories from the last 14 days.
Dr. John Lisle (Research Microbial Ecologist, SPCMSC) is currently being funded by South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) to characterize the rates of microbial removal of nitrates, nitrites, ammonium, and phosphorus from treated water from the Kissimmee River that will be recharged into the Upper Floridan Aquifer (UFA). This study is providing novel data on the ability of microorganisms native to the UFA and introduced in the treated recharge water to remove nutrients during storage at aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) facilities near Lake Okeechobee. The data from this study are being considered by state regulatory agencies for assignment of water quality improvement criteria to the storage phase of recharged water at ASR facilities. Dr. Lisle presented a webinar to South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) personnel in West Palm Beach, Florida, and Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FL DEP) personnel in Tallahassee, Florida, describing recent research findings on the removal of nitrates, nitrites, and phosphorus from recharged water during the storage in the Upper Floridan Aquifer.
Dr. John Lisle (Research Microbial Ecologist, SPCMSC) was an invited panel member, participating in an open discussion on the occurrence and persistence of harmful algal blooms in south Florida with Florida State Senator Glavano. The panel also included University of South Florida faculty members Dr. Valerie Harwood, Dr. Mark Raines, Dr. Sarina Ergas, Dr. David Lewis, Dr. George Phillippdis, and Dr. Mahmood Nachabe. The discussion focused on existing and prospective infrastructure projects that contribute to or mitigate harmful algal blooms in the watersheds associated with Lake Okeechobee and those leading to both coasts. Dr. Lisle discussed his recent research findings that during the storage phase of an aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) cycle, nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations in the recharged water are significantly reduced, providing a higher quality water upon recovery and discharge back into Lake Okeechobee.
The USGS Coastal Change Hazards storm team is predicting coastal change impacts due to the potential for high waves and storm surge along the Southeast Atlantic coast. In North Carolina where Florence is predicted to make landfall, 75% of sandy beaches are likely to erode and 15% of dunes are likely to overwash. Forecasts showing the timing and magnitude of elevated water levels at the shoreline in the Total Water Level and Coastal Change Forecast Viewer are predicting that water levels will be elevated for several days, increasing the likelihood of overwash and inundation as dunes are eroded through time.
Predictions will be updated as conditions change and are available in the Coastal Change Hazards Portal.
The USGS, FWRI, and FIO, as part of the Florida Coastal Mapping Program (FCMaP), are leading a coastal and seafloor mapping prioritization workshop on Sept. 7, 2018, with stakeholders from 20 different Federal, State, County, and academic entities. The group will utilize a new tool developed by NOAA and FWRI to indicate which areas of the seabed, from the shore to the shelf edge, are most important for high resolution elevation data collection. The different entities participating will populate the tool and the results will be analyzed for spatial and temporal priorities. Cheryl Hapke (Research Geologist), Jim Flocks (Research Geologist), and Kathryn Smith (Ecologist) from the SPCMSC will attend in person, and Xan Fredericks (Cartographer/Lidar Coordinator) will attend via webinar. The workshop is the first of 6 regional workshops that will be held around the State of Florida as part of the FCMaP strategy for facilitating the collection of modern high-resolution elevation information for all of Florida's coastal waters in the next decade. The series of workshops were formulated during a stakeholder workshop in January, 2018, during which an existing data inventory and gap analysis were presented. The stakeholder group indicated that the Big Bend Region was a high-priority area due to the paucity of high-resolution bathymetry for the area.
Xan Fredericks, Lidar Coordinator for the Coastal-Marine Hazards and Resources Program, was invited by the Ohio Chapter of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA), along with the County Engineers Association of Ohio (CEAO) and Ohio Geographically Referenced Information Program (OGRIP), to be the featured Keynote Speaker for the 2018 Ohio GIS Conference. The keynote is titled "Why GIS Matters to the USGS Coastal-Marine Hazards and Resources Program" to compliment this year's conference theme, "GIS Matters." The 2018 Ohio GIS Conference will be held September 24–26 at the Hyatt Regency in Columbus. The annual event typically has more than 400 professionals in attendance to learn about the newest trends of geospatial technology. To find out more about the conference, see the conference website.