Stories From The Field

Determining Variations in Exposure Sensitivity to Tsunami Hazards in Oregon

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Although a potential tsunami-inundation zone from a Cascadia subduction zone earthquake had been delineated in Oregon, what was in this area and how it was developed was unknown. Land use planners and coastal resource managers needed localized data to determine if the regional mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery strategies in place should be augmented.


The U.S. Geological Survey prepared a vulnerability assessment that compared tsunami-related risk differences among Oregon’s coastal cities. As part of the data-collection process, the team used the Coastal Change Analysis Program (C-CAP) data set to mine land cover information in the zoned cities and to document variations in the percentage of developed land, human populations, economic assets, and critical facilities.


This report enabled representatives of the State of Oregon to further their dialogue on societal risk to tsunami hazards and help identify future preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery planning needs within the state’s coastal cities and economic sectors.

Maps of 2001 NOAA C-CAP land-cover data for the Oregon cities of (A) Lakeside, (B) Newport, and (C) Seaside.
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