Western Geographic Science Center

The Western Geographic Science Center  (WGSC) helps decision makers understand how people and the environment interact through geographic research on environmental and societal impacts from natural hazards and climate change. Our projects analyze human and environmental interactions over space and time. We work with many partners and link numerous natural and social science disciplines. WGSC staff are located across the USGS Pacific, Southwest, and Northwest regions, with our research topics ranging in scale from global food security to nationwide land cover change to community-level hazard analyses. Our research methods utilize the latest in remote sensing and GIS software to analyze a variety of spatial data such as Landsat satellite imagery, U.S. Census Bureau demographic data, LiDAR elevation data, and various data collected from local sensors built by our team.

Review of - Remote Sensing Handbook – Volume I: Remotely Sensed Data Characterization, Classification, and Accuracies.

A must-have book! The hefty weight and impressive size makes this handbook appear daunting and intimidating, however, this essential book should be kept within reach of any serious remote sensing professional. The quality and depth achieved in its exposition of relevant and current topics merits the glowing reviews, endorsements, and accolades it received from recognized authorities in the field. Read entire review

Pedestrian evacuation modeling to reduce vehicle use for distant tsunami evacuations in Hawaiʻi

USGS WGSC researchers collaborated with the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency to model pedestrian evacuations from distant tsunami threats that could affect Oahu, Hawaii. The results will help emergency managers develop outreach efforts to minimize vehicle use and potential traffic during evacuations in some areas. The paper is published in the International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction and available at https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1WmHa7t2zYxTYF


The WGSC GFSAD30 project accomplished their goal!

The global croplands mapping project has succesfully mapped croplands across the entire planet in order to understand the security of food world wide. Below are many press anouncments and interviews with the project leader Prasad Thenkabail.

American Scientist
Croplands Up Close

There's More Farmland in the World Than Was Previously Thought

International Business Times
India beats US and China on farmland: Report

USDA Radio
* They are running one more segment later this week.

Water Canada
Global Agriculture Intensity Detailed in Interactive Map

AG Web
New Interactive Maps Of Global Cropland

Central Valley Business Times
New map shows where the food is grown -- and not

Environment Guru
Global Agriculture Intensity Detailed in Interactive Map

Southwest Farm Press and Delta Farm Press
This map clearly shows individual farm fields anywhere in the world

Daily Digital News
There's more farmland in the world than was previously thought

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