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Maps and Atlases

Natural Hazards Maps

earthquake map

Table of Contents:

Other Places to Look:


  • HAZPAC: An Interactive Map of Pacific Rim Natural Hazards, Population, and Infrastructure (US Geological Survey) 2002 (USGS Digital Data Series DDS-76) (CD-ROM also available in Docs I 19.121:76 cd-rom) Interactive mapper concerning natural hazards in the Pacific Rim region. Contains a variety of environmental, social, and economic data layers that connect natural hazards to social and economic globalization.
  • Online Hazards Map (ESRI & Federal Emergency Management Agency-FEMA) Interactive mapper covering the United States shows hazards associated with specific areas. Hazards mapped include flood hazards based upon FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM); and historical occurences of hailstorms, hurricanes, tornadoes, wind storms, and earthquakes. Search by zip code, city, or congressional district.
  • ReliefWeb Map Centre (ReliefWeb) Contains reference and thematic maps concerning current and past humanitarian emergencies and natural disasters. Search by region, country, or type of emergency.


  • Earthquake 3D (Wolton) Download and install this free software that creates an rotating Earth globe showing earthquakes for the past seven days as documented by the US Geological Survey. There are options to turn on a depth indicator, filter by date and magnitude, and update USGS earthquake data.
  • Earthquake Maps (US Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards Program) Includes links to earthquake maps produced by the US Geological Survey.
  • Global Seismicity and World Cities (Masse and National Earthquake Information Center) 1995 (Map G 3201 C55 1005 G5) Shows worldwide hazards to cities by large earthquakes.
  • Global Seismic Hazard Map (Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program) Includes global and regional maps of seismicity and hazards.
  • Latest Earthquakes (USGS Earthquake Harzards Program) Includes overview and regional maps of earthquakes in the United States and the world over the last seven days. Also includes links to recent and historical earthquakes.
  • National Seismic Hazard Maps (USGS Earthquake Hazards Program) US national and regional maps that show earthquake ground motions that have a specified probability of being exceeded in 50 years.
  • Quaternary Fault and Fold Database of the United States (US Geological Survey) Contains information on faults and associated folds in the United States that are believed to be sources of M>6 earthquakes during the Quaternary (the past 1,600,000 years). Maps of these geologic structures are linked to individual descriptions and references for each structure. Search using a map-based or text-based interface.
  • Seismic Monitor (IRIS-Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology) Near real-time map of recent earthquakes which are shown as colored circles, where the size of the circle tells you the magnitude of the quake. Only earthquakes of magnitude 4.0 or greater are displayed. Clicking on the center of an earthquake circle will list information on recent earthquakes in that vicinity and provide a link to their seismograms. Clicking on observatory stations (the small blue triangles) brings up an information page on the station.
  • Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2007 (US Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards Program)
  • This Dynamic Planet: World Map of Volcanoes, Earthquakes, and Plate Tectonics (Simkin and U.S. Geological Survey) 1989 (print copy available in map G 3201 C55 1989 T5)
  • World seismicity, 1979-1988 (Goter and National Earthquake Information Center) 1990 (Map G 3201 C55 1988 G6)


  • Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) (US Federal Emergency Management Agency. National Flood Insurance Program) Flood risk maps that show roads, lakes, railroads, streams, special flood hazard areas - SFHA (areas subject to inundation by a flood that has a 1% or greater chance of being equaled or exceeded during any given year), base elevations or depths, flood insurance risk zones, and regulatory floodways. Scales range from 1:6,000 to 1:24,000. Information presented is based on historic, meteorolgic, hydrologic, and hydraulic data, as well as open-space conditions, flood control works, and development that is gathered through FEMA engineering studies referred to as Flood Insurance Studies (FISs). The FEMA Mapping Information Platform is an interactive mapper that allows one to search, view and print flood hazard maps which are based upon FIRM maps.


  • Landslide Overview Map of the Conterminous United States (Radruch-Hall, Colton, Davies, Lucchitta, Skipp, & Varnes) 1982 (US Geological Survey Professional Paper 1183) (print copy available in Docs I 19.16:1183) General map at a scale of 1:1.5 million includes key to landslides of special interest.

Tsunamis and Sea Level Rise

  • Flood Maps (Firetree) Input a level of sea surface rise from 1-14 meters and create a map showing the area that would be flooded by the rise. You can select any area of the world and zoom in to look closely at a location as small as a few city blocks. Uses Google Maps and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission digital topographic data.
  • Tsunami-Generating Earthquakes (Masse and Dewey) 1997 Depicts epicenters of strong earthquakes in the Pacific Ocean basin that generated destructive tsunamis during the period 1900-1994. Locations affected by notable tsunamis that originated from distant earthquakes are also shown.

Tornadoes and Hurricanes

  • Historical Hurricane Tracks (US NOAA Coastal Services Center) Interactive mapping application that allows you to search and display Atlantic Basin and East-Central Pacific Basin tropical cyclone data. Enter a ZIP Code, latitude and longitude coordinates, city or state, or geographic region and then view the selected tracks on a map.
  • Historical Tornado Map (Tornado History Project) Uses Google Maps and US National Weather Service historical data from 1950-2005 to map over 48,000 tornadoes.
  • United States Tornado Touchdown Points 1950-2004 ( Maps tornado touchdown points for tornadoes that occurred in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The associated database includes descriptive information on the latitude and longitude of the touchdown and lift-off points, the number of fatalities or injuries, an estimate of damage costs, and the classification of the storm on the Fujita Tornado Damage Scale.


  • This Dynamic Planet: World Map of Volcanoes, Earthquakes, and Plate Tectonics (Simkin and U.S. Geological Survey) 1989 (print copy available in map G 3201 C55 1989 T5)
  • Volcanoes of the World (Smithsonian Institution Global Volcanism Program) Contains information on individual volcanoes of the world. One of access points is a regional map interface.
  • World Map of Volcanoes and Principal Aeronautical Features (Casadevall and Thompson) 1995 (Docs I 19.87: GP-1011) (USGS Geophysical Investigations Map GP-1011) Shows the locations of the Earth's 1,330 volcanoes active in the last 10,000 years, together with the locations and identifiers of selected radio navigation aids (navaids) and great-circle routes of commercial air traffic between major cities. Also describes the dangers that volcanic emissions--chiefly drifting ash clouds--pose to aircraft.