• Announcing the New ABA Community Resilience Handbook

    Click here to view Announcing the New ABA Community Resilience Handbook as a PDF.


    Announcing the New ABA Community Resilience Handbook

    From the American Bar Association website – https://www.americanbar.org/
    September 02, 2020

    New ABA book shares tools and strategies to promote community resilience

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    CHICAGO, Sept. 2, 2020 — Just published by the American Bar Association Law Practice Division, “The Community Resilience Handbook” is a guide for lawyers, municipal officials, and other stakeholders seeking to build and strengthen resilient communities. It presents theoretical frameworks and practical tools to help communities better withstand and more quickly recover from disruptive events like natural disasters.

    Community resilience requires collaboration across many sectors and professions, and this book’s interdisciplinary authorship reflects that collaboration. Editors George B. Huff, Jr., Edward A. Thomas, and Nancy McNabb solicited contributions from legal professionals, architects, academics, engineers, business continuity professionals, and others, to provide a deeply nuanced view of resilience in one volume.

    Chapters present perspectives on:

    • Recommended approaches and resources
    • Resilient infrastructure
    • Avoiding legal challenges to higher standards for development and redevelopment
    • Organizational resilience and business continuity
    • Resilient agriculture and environmental considerations
    • Financial considerations
    • Measuring and assessing risk
    • The role of lawyers in promoting resilience
    • Government leadership in promoting resilience
    • Collaboration and building a culture of continuity
    • International standards on resilience

    Book editors Huff, Thomas and McNabb are noted industry leaders. Huff is senior business continuity manager at the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak). In 2019, he was recognized as a fellow of the Business Continuity Institute. Thomas is president emeritus of the Natural Hazard Mitigation Association. He is an elected fellow of the ABA Foundation, a member of the ABA Disaster Response and Preparedness Committee, and chair of the ABA State and Local Government Law Section’s Resilience Task Force. And McNabb is secretary of the Board of the National Institute of Building Science Multi-Hazard Mitigation Council and former manager of Building and Fire Codes and Standards of the Engineering Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

    Title:                      “The Community Resilience Handbook

    Publisher:              ABA Publishing, Law Practice Division

    Pages:                    470

    Product Code:        5330251

    ISBN:                     9781641057387

    Size:                      6 x 9

    Binding:                 Paperback, eBook

    Price:                     $79.95 List; $71.95 Members

    Orders:                   800-285-2221 or ShopABA.org

    Editor’s note: Digital review copies are available by sending an email to Francine Bennett at Francine.Bennett@americanbar.org. If you publish a review of this book, please send tear sheets or a copy for our files to ABA Publishing, 321 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60654.

    The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at www.americanbar.org/news and on Twitter @ABANews.

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  • FEMA: Landmark Nationwide Losses Avoided Study Finds That Building Codes Save

    Click here to view FEMA: Landmark Nationwide Losses Avoided Study Finds That Building Codes Save as a PDF.


    FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency)
    Friday, November 20, 2020 12:32 PM

    Landmark Nationwide Losses Avoided Study Finds That Building Codes Save

    Using big data, FEMA’s modeling of the 18.1M buildings constructed in the United States since 2000 has found that the nation has benefited to the tune of $1.6 billion in savings each year. These savings represent the cumulative losses avoided from property damage associated with using the International Codes or similar building codes during floods, hurricane, and earthquakes. FEMA projects that, by the year 2040, the nation will save around $3.2 billion in savings per year. This adds up to almost $133 billion in total losses avoided from 2000 to 2040.

    Those dollar values represent considerable financial reasons for why communities should be proactive in adopting and enforcing hazard-resistant building codes. The study’s results fully support FEMA’s mission to help people prepare for, mitigate, respond to, and recover from natural hazards, specifically through programs and efforts that promote using hazard-resistant building codes.

    FEMA is developing outreach materials that will help programs across the agency convey the study’s results to our state, local, tribal and territorial partners. The Building Codes Saves Study, which details the methodology, results, and conclusions and additional information materials are available on FEMA’s website.

    If you are interested in learning more about Building Codes Save and how you can integrate the study’s findings into your program, please email the Building Science Helpline.


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  • CDP Webinar: Working with Indigenous Communities After a Disaster: Focus on South Dakota – Dec. 3rd, 2020 @ 2:00 p.m.

    Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) Webinar: Working with Indigenous Communities After a Disaster: Focus on South Dakota

    December 3, 2020 @ 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time


    Indigenous communities are often disproportionately affected by disasters and face unique barriers to recovery. The Center for Disaster Philanthropy is hosting a webinar on Thursday, Dec. 3 at 2 p.m. ET to discuss working with Indigenous communities after a disaster.

    Indigenous leaders will share their experiences in disaster recovery, explain how needs differ in their communities, and discuss best practices for working together respectfully in ways that honor culture and land.

    Featured speakers include:

    • Shelly Saunsoci, long-term recovery group director, Yankton Sioux Tribe, White Swan Community, South Dakota
    • Maretta Champagne, director, Lakota Nation Disaster Resiliency, Oglala Lakota Sioux Tribe, Pine Ridge, South Dakota
    • Annie Loyd, emergency manager and community liaison, Great Plains Tribal Leaders Health Board, Rapid City, South Dakota
    • Heidi Schultz, program manager, Tribal Communities Disaster Recovery Program, Center for Disaster Philanthropy (moderator)

    Please register and join us.

    Nancy Beers | Early Recovery Fund Director

    CDP Center for Disaster Philanthropy
    One Thomas Circle, NW | Suite 700 | Washington, DC 20005
    P: (507) 990-5307 | F: (507) 373-6104 | Nancy.Beers@disasterphilanthropy.org
    www.disasterphilanthropy.org | @funds4disaster

    Support the CDP COVID-19 Response Fund
    Learn about the Midwest Early Recovery Fund

  • Message to Recovery Partners from Kevin Snyder, FEMA

    From: Snyder, Kevin <kevin.snyder@fema.dhs.gov>
    Sent: Wednesday, November 18, 2020 10:06 AM

    Dear Recovery Partners,

    I am happy to share the FEMA Region 3 Interagency Recovery Coordination Task Force COVID-19’s Impact on the Human and Social Services Sector. The human and social services sector has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. The demand for services has grown dramatically, at the same time as revenue losses and staff layoffs threaten the safety net so vital to those hardest hit by the economic downturn.

    This report raises awareness about the challenges facing this sector that are critical to the safety and wellbeing of our citizens and the survival of the organizations that serve them. Summarizing existing and available research and analysis, the report highlights the situation in Region 3, but also provides data on the situation for the nation. The nonprofit sector, for example, has lost 8% of all employees nationwide since February 2020, while in critical fields the losses have been more severe – with 11% unemployment in educational services and 12% in social assistance.

    This work would not have been possible without the thoughtful contributions and feedback from partners such as HHS, USDA, the National Council of Nonprofits, and many others (see those acknowledgements in the report!). We extend our thanks to all of them.

    Please share this report widely within your networks and feel free to reach out with any questions.

    Take care and stay in touch!

    Kevin I. Snyder

    Deputy Federal Coordinating Officer for Recovery | Interagency Recovery Coordination Task Force | Region 3
    Mobile: (202) 340-7065
    kevin.snyder@fema.dhs.gov
    Federal Emergency Management Agency

     

     

  • AGHP Webinar: Large Area Flood, Steep Creek, and Landslide-Dam Flood Risk Prioritization – 11/24/20 | 2:00 – 3:00 pm Eastern Time | Online

    AGHP Webinar: Large Area Flood, Steep Creek, and Landslide-Dam Flood Risk Prioritization – November 24, 2020 @ 2:00 – 3:00 pm Eastern Time – Online


    Mountainous regions are frequently subject to geohazards that cause property damage, loss of life, and the interruption of transportation arteries. Of the many thousands of hazard areas, only a tiny fraction receives a full risk management cycle from hazard identification to risk control. Since development exists within these geohazard susceptible expanses, communities require support to make risk-informed decisions about regulation, mitigation, and emergency management.

    Flood, steep creek, or landslide-dam flood risk prioritization studies are being completed for approximately 320,000 km2 of British Columbia, with about 200,000 km2 completed to date. While most creeks’ headwaters are mostly undeveloped, the central valley floodplains and lower reaches of steep streams contain the majority of development and lifelines infrastructure. The assessment applies a consistent methodology to characterize geohazards and elements at risk at a regional scale, prioritize areas based on relative risk, and organize large volumes of geospatial data. Thus far, over 50,000 geohazard areas, including about 2,000 steep creek fans subject to debris flows and debris floods, have been prioritized.

    This webinar will present approaches to prioritize geohazard risk across large and typically data-scarce regions like British Columbia and discuss how their results support development planning, regulation, and emergency management.

    Learn More & Register


    Presented by:
    Kris Holm
    Principal Geoscientist, BGC Engineering
    Please remember that AGHP Members get one free coupon code for webinars and have an exclusive discounted rate for all webinars. If you have not used your free coupon code for webinars, please email info@geohazardassociation.orgfor assistance. To pay the reduced member rate, please login to the Member Center and checkout while being logged in. The price of the webinar will automatically adjust based on your membership type.
    If you are not a member and would like to join to receive free and discounted webinar rates, and to have access to the Member Center please click here.

    www.geohazardassociation.org

    LEARN MORE ABOUT THE AGHP
    The Association of Geohazard Professionals (AGHP) was created to support the development of standards, specifications, and best practices concerning the design and implementation of geohazard-related technologies and products;and to support and provide education to the Geohazard Community and those it serves.

     

  • FP-108-024-02: Ecosystem Service Benefits in Benefit-Cost Analysis for FEMA’s Mitigation Programs Policy

    FP-108-024-02: Ecosystem Service Benefits in Benefit-Cost Analysis for FEMA’s Mitigation Programs Policy

    FEMA has shared FP-108-024-02: Ecosystem Service Benefits in Benefit-Cost Analysis for FEMA’s Mitigation Programs Policy – that allows for ecosystem service benefits to be included in a mitigation project’s Benefit Cost Analysis (BCA) regardless of the Benefit-Cost Ratio (BCR). Previous policy limited the use of these benefits to projects meeting a .75 BCR.

    With this new policy, ecosystem service benefits can be used for all project types eligible under the Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) and PA 406 mitigation programs that support the incorporation of ecosystem service benefits and result in the improvement of the natural environment.  Applicants will be able to take advantage of the new policy as part of the BRIC application.

    FEMA hopes this new policy will encourage more nature-based solutions to be included in mitigation projects by removing barriers for the use of ecosystem service benefits in a project.

    A fact sheet has been scheduled for release but any questions on this new policy can be directed to fema-hma-grants-policy@fema.dhs.gov  You can find the policy on the main HMA policy webpage here.

     

  • CRS-The Disaster Relief Fund Overview and Issues Update of 11-13-2020

    Click here to view CRS-The Disaster Relief Fund Overview and Issues Update of 11-13-2020 as a PDF.


    The CRS Disaster Relief Fund Overview & Issues Update includes a history of the DRF up to 2020 (including COVID-19) and can also be viewed on the NHMA Useful Links Page.

     

     

  • FEMA National Risk Index Online Tool Advisory

    Click here to view the FEMA National Risk Index Online Tool Advisory as a PDF.
    This can also be viewed on the NHMA Resources Page here.


    FEMA has released The National Risk Index (The Index), an online tool to help illustrate the communities most at risk of natural hazards. It is made possible through a collaboration between FEMA and dozens of partners in academia; local, state and federal government; and private industry.

    The Risk Index leverages best available source data to provide a holistic view of community-level risk nationwide by combining multiple hazards with socioeconomic and built environment factors. It calculates a baseline relative risk measurement for each United States county and census tract for 18 natural hazards, based on Expected Annual Loss, Social Vulnerability, and Community Resilience.

    You can check your local Risk Index data by county or census track at the link below:

    https://hazards.geoplatform.gov/portal/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=ddf915a24fb24dc8863eed96bc3345f8

    Attached is an advisory from FEMA with more information and other links to the Risk Index.

     

  • Mitigation Misery – Practical Tools for Floodplain Managers Brown Bag – 11/17/2020

    Click here to view Mitigation ­Misery–Practical_Tools_for_Floodplain_Managers (11-17-20) as a PDF.


    Register now for FEMA’s November Virtual Brown Bag through Eventbrite here.

    Mitigation Misery – Practical Tools for Floodplain Managers

    12 p.m. – 1 p.m. CT

    Tuesday, November 17, 2020

    Adobe Connect Link and Conference line details are sent one day prior to the webinar. Watch your inbox!  The November Virtual Brown Bag, “Mitigation Misery – Practical Tools for Floodplain Managers”, presented by Edward Thomas Esq. We are very fortunate to welcome Ed! He is widely published, an elected Fellow of the American Bar Association (ABA) Foundation, member of the ABA Disaster Response and Preparedness Committee and Vice-Chair of the ABA State and Local Government Law Section’s Resilience Task Force. During his career in HUD and FEMA, Ed worked closely with individuals, companies, non-profit organizations local communities developing safe and affordable housing, and results oriented Floodplain Management and Hazard Mitigation. He worked closely with disaster survivors on about two hundred disasters and emergencies, serving as the President’s representative, the Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO), dozens of times.

    Ed is currently working with many dedicated volunteers to further refine and promulgate the Natural Hazard Mitigation Association’s Disaster Risk Reduction curriculum. He also is one of the editors & authors of the just published ABA Community Resilience Handbook.

    He manages a private practice of Law, Edward A. Thomas Esq., LLC and just relocated with his wife from the floodplain of beautiful Marina Bay, Massachusetts to live in lovely [and Earthquake prone] Rancho Mirage, California.

    Be sure to see the latest BLE data added to our Estimated BFE Viewer at https://webapps.usgs.gov/infrm/EstBFE/.  The Viewer performs best on Firefox or Chrome.

    Recent changes have been made to FEMA.gov. Until a re-direct from our earlier location on FEMA.gov is made, you can see all of the available BLE resources at https://www.fema.gov/media-collection/base-level-engineering-ble-tools-and-resources

    Please RSVP for this free webinar through this EventBrite page. Feel free to share this email and the registration link (https://r6virtualbrownbag.eventbrite.com) with other interested stakeholders. Please note that one Continuing Education Credit hour will be available for Certified Floodplain Managers.

    I hope you can join this online webinar! An Adobe Connect link and a call-in number will be provided via email to all registrants prior to the training session.

     

     

     

  • New FEMA Mitigation Policy: Ecosystem Services Benefits

    New Mitigation Policy: Ecosystem Services Benefits

    Hi Mitigation and Recovery Colleagues –

    I am pleased to share a new policy – FP-108-024-02: Ecosystem Service Benefits in Benefit-Cost Analysis for FEMA’s Mitigation Programs Policy –  that allows for ecosystem service benefits to be included in a mitigation project’s Benefit Cost Analysis (BCA) regardless of the Benefit-Cost Ratio (BCR). Previous policy limited the use of these benefits to projects meeting a .75 BCR.

    With this new policy, ecosystem service benefits can be used for all project types eligible under the Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) and PA 406 mitigation programs that support the incorporation of ecosystem service benefits and result in the improvement of the natural environment.  As the BRIC application period opens today, applicants will be able to take advantage of the new policy.

    I am hopeful that this new policy will encourage more nature-based solutions to be included in mitigation projects by removing barriers for the use of ecosystem service benefits in a project.

    We will be releasing a fact sheet in the next few days, but in the meantime, please direct any questions on this new policy to fema-hma-grants-policy@fema.dhs.gov  You can find the policy on the main HMA policy webpage here.

    Thank you,

    Katherine

    Katherine B. Fox
    Assistant Administrator for Mitigation
    Mitigation Directorate | Federal Insurance Mitigation Administration | Resilience
    Phone: (202) 646-1046
    katherine.fox5@fema.dhs.gov | Pronouns: she/her/hers
    Federal Emergency Management Agency
    fema.gov