The US Geological Survey (USGS) conducts an ongoing national assessment of coastal change hazards in order to help protect lives and support management of coastal infrastructure and resources. The research group rapidly gathers to investigate coastal changes along the Gulf Coast's sandy beaches after each hurricane to examine the magnitude and variability of impacts. This investigation helps to protect the environment and the American people by preparing maps that show the extreme coastal change. It also posts online video and still photography and LIDAR (light detection and ranging) survey data after each storm, to provide a clear picture of the devastated area. The USGS provides data to understand changing coastal vulnerabilities so that informed decisions can be made to protect disaster affected areas and its resources. Earth scientists in the USGS are learning more about coastal dynamics, determining changes, and improving the ability to forecast how coastal environments will respond to the next storm.