March 18, 2005


  1. Call for Papers: Annual Hazards and Disasters Paper Competition
  2. On This Day in History: 1925 Tri-State Tornado
  3. Call for Nominations: WSSPC Awards in Excellence Program
  4. 25th Anniversary of Eruption of Mount St. Helens
  5. First National Flood Safety Awareness Week
  6. New Quick Response Report from the Natural Hazards Center
  7. EERI/FEMA Graduate Fellowship in Earthquake Hazard Reduction
  8. Funding Opportunity: Applied Grants for Disaster Risk Reduction
  9. Funding Opportunity: FY 2005 Competitive Training Grants Program
  10. Funding Opportunity: FY 2005 Buffer Zone Protection Program
  11. Funding Opportunity: Assistance to Firefighters Grants
  12. Some New Web Resources
  13. Conferences and Training

1) Call for Papers: Annual Hazards and Disasters Paper Competition

***Please distribute widely***

The Natural Hazards Center is pleased to announce its second Annual Hazards and Disasters Paper Competition for Undergraduate and Graduate Students. Papers may be literature reviews, theoretical arguments, case studies, or descriptions of research results on topics relevant to the social/behavioral aspects of hazards and disasters. Paper topics may include, but are not limited to, the Asian tsunami, climate change, public warnings, natural hazards mitigation, land use, women and children in disasters, earthquake prediction, disaster myths, and the transport of hazardous materials. Papers will be judged on their originality, organization, and demonstrated knowledge of the topic. The deadline for submissions is April 29, 2005. Papers may be submitted electronically or mailed to the address below.

Eligibility and Criteria:

  • Author must have enrolled as an undergraduate or graduate student in at least one term during the 2004-2005 academic year
  • Papers must be authored by one or more students and not coauthored by faculty or a colleague who is not a student
  • Papers cannot have been submitted for publication at the time of submission, although papers presented at professional meetings or submitted for presentation at professional meetings may be submitted
  • Papers must be less than 25 pages, including notes, references, and tables (double-spaced, 1” margins, 8 1/2” x 11”)
  • Paper submission should include a cover letter or submission form (available online) including name of author, academic affiliation, academic major, mailing address, e-mail, title of paper, and a brief abstract/summary (100-150 words)

Undergraduate and graduate winners will 1) receive $100, 2) have their papers published on the Natural Hazards Center Web site, 3) be invited to present their work at the Annual Hazards Workshop in Boulder, Colorado (with registration and ticketed meals provided), and 4) receive information on how to submit their papers for review and potential publication in the Natural Hazards Review, a peer reviewed scholarly journal.

Students should send one copy of their paper accompanied by the submission form or cover letter by mail to:

Student Paper Competition
Natural Hazards Center
University of Colorado
482 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309-0482

Alternatively, students may send a copy of their paper (in Word or PDF format) accompanied by the submission form or cover letter via e-mail to Christine Bevc at christine.bevc@colorado.edu.

Papers must be received no later than April 29, 2005. Submissions will be reviewed and winners will be notified by June 1, 2005. Any questions/inquiries should be directed to Christine Bevc at christine.bevc@colorado.edu.

For additional information, details, and/or downloadable copies of the submission form, visit http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/.

2) On This Day in History: 1925 Tri-State Tornado

Eighty years ago today, on March 18, 1925, the deadliest tornado in U.S. history tore through southeast Missouri, southern Illinois, and southwest Indiana, taking almost 700 lives, injuring thousands, and destroying 15,000 homes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has created a Web site to commemorate the event and to promote severe weather education and preparedness. First-hand accounts, interesting quotes, photographs, and statistics are used to tell the tale of the Great Tri-State Tornado. Visit the site at http://www.crh.noaa.gov/pah/1925/.

3) Call for Nominations: WSSPC Awards in Excellence Program

The Western States Seismic Policy Council (WSSPC) is now accepting nominations for its 2005 Awards in Excellence Program. The program recognizes achievement in different areas of earthquake mitigation, preparedness, and response and strives to bring greater visibility to exemplary state, county, and local programs and policies and to facilitate the transfer of those experiences. Awards will be presented at the WSSPC Annual Conference in the fall of 2005.

Nominations must be received in the WSSPC office by Friday, April 22, 2005. Find out more about eligibility, categories, and selection criteria, and download an award nomination application at http://www.wsspc.org/Awards/.

4) 25th Anniversary of Eruption of Mount St. Helens

On May 18, 1980, a magnitude 5.1 earthquake triggered the collapse of the summit and north flank of Mount St. Helens and formed the largest landslide in recorded history. Gas rich magma and super-heated groundwater trapped inside the volcano were suddenly released in a powerful lateral blast, melting snow and ice that covered the volcano. The resulting floodwater mixed with rock and debris to create concrete-like mudflows. Within three minutes, 230 square miles of forest was flattened. A plume of volcanic ash and pumice spewed out of the volcano reaching 15 miles in height and traveling thousands of miles. A number of events will be held to commemorate the eruption and remember the people who lost their lives. Details about the events can be found at http://www.fs.fed.us/gpnf/mshnvm/25th-anniversary/.

5) First National Flood Safety Awareness Week

The week of March 21-25, 2005 has been designated by the National Weather Service as the first annual National Flood Safety Awareness Week. It is intended to highlight some of the many ways floods can occur, the hazards associated with floods, and what you can do to save life and property. Each day of the week will be dedicated to a particular flood-related topic:

Monday: Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service
Tuesday: Turn Around Don’t Drown
Wednesday: Tropical Cyclone Inland Flooding
Thursday: Determining Flood Risk and Flood Insurance
Friday: Flood Safety

Find out more about the week’s events and access useful resources at http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov/.

6) New Quick Response Report from the Natural Hazards Center

The following Quick Response report has been posted on the Natural Hazards Center’s Web site at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/qr/qrrepts.html.

QR 172 Elderly Populations in Disasters: Recounting Evacuation Processes from Two Skilled-Care Facilities in Central Florida, August 2004, by Michelle Kuba, Alina Dorian, Sarah Kuljian, and Kimberley Shoaf. 2004.

The purpose of this research was to identify current evacuation procedures for the nursing home population and document the baseline status of facilities and the procedures utilized in evacuations. To do so, researchers conducted interviews at two long-term care facilities that were evacuated because of Hurricane Charley. This report describes the differing circumstances and the different approaches taken to the evacuation as well as the successes and challenges experienced by each of the facilities.

7) EERI/FEMA Graduate Fellowship in Earthquake Hazard Reduction

The Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI) is pleased to announce the availability of a graduate fellowship to support one full-time student in a discipline contributing to the science and practice of earthquake hazard mitigation. The one-year fellowship, underwritten with funds provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), is designed to foster the participation of capable individuals in working toward goals and activities of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program.

The EERI/FEMA fellowship provides a nine-month stipend of $12,000 with an additional $8,000 for tuition, fees, and research expenses.

Applicants must be enrolled in a graduate degree program at an accredited U.S. college or university and must hold U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status. All applications must include an academic transcript and a statement of educational and career goals. Applications, together with a letter of nomination, shall be submitted to EERI by a faculty sponsor at the host institution. Two additional reference letters should be submitted directly to EERI. They should evaluate the applicant’s recent academic performance and the candidate’s potential to contribute to the field.

Applications are due May 16, 2005. The award announcement will be made on June 20, 2005. Candidates may download application forms from EERI’s Web site at http://www.eeri.org/home/Grad_Fell_application.pdf or obtain them upon request from EERI, 499 14th Street, Suite 320, Oakland, CA, 94612; (510) 451-0905; e-mail: eeri@eeri.org.

8) Funding Opportunity: Applied Grants for Disaster Risk Reduction

The ProVention Consortium, a global partnership of governments, international organizations, academic institutions, the private sector, and civil society organizations aimed at reducing disaster impacts in developing countries, has announced a second round of grants to support research on innovative disaster risk management and encourage competent young professionals dedicated to reducing disaster risk in developing countries.

Students and young professionals from developing countries are invited to propose creative projects and ideas. These proposals may include research projects, professional internships, or professional development programs. They should focus on the links between disasters, development, and the environment, and should fall into three general categories: risk identification and analysis, risk reduction, and risk sharing/transfer. The selected projects will be awarded a maximum grant of $5,000 and must be completed within nine months of the award under the guidance of a faculty advisor or a mentor who is a disaster professional. Proposals submitted via e-mail are due May 15, 2005. Proposals sent through the mail are due May 1, 2005. Grant awards will be announced on or about August 1, 2005. For information about proposal requirements, eligibility, and how to apply, visit http://www.adpc.net/dms/AGDR2.html. Visit the ProVention Consortium on the Web at http://www.proventionconsortium.org/.

9) Funding Opportunity: FY 2005 Competitive Training Grants Program

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Fiscal Year 2005 Competitive Training Grants Program (CTGP) - Solicitation for Concept Papers is available at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/odp/docs/fy05ctgp.pdf. Through the CTGP, $30 million in grant funding is available for national scope training initiatives that further the Office of Domestic Preparedness’ (ODP) mission of preparing the nation to prevent, deter, respond to, and recover from incidents of terrorism involving weapons of mass destruction.

Concept papers must be submitted via the Grant Management System at https://grants.ojp.usdoj.gov/ no later than April 8, 2005, 8:00 pm EST. For additional information, contact the ODP Helpline at (800) 368-6498.

10) Funding Opportunity: FY 2005 Buffer Zone Protection Program

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Fiscal Year 2005 Buffer Zone Protection Program Guidelines and Application Kit is now available online at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/odp/docs/fy05bzpp.pdf. The 2005 program provides funding for the equipment, management, and administration of actions, to protect, secure, and reduce the vulnerabilities of identified critical infrastructure and key resource sites.

Applications must be submitted via the Grant Management System at https://grants.ojp.usdoj.gov/ no later than April 1, 2005, 8:00 pm EST. For additional information, contact the ODP Helpline at (800) 368-6498.

11) Funding Opportunity: Assistance to Firefighters Grants

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is currently accepting applications for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program. The AFG program assists rural, urban, and suburban fire departments throughout the United States. These funds are used by the nation’s firefighters to increase the effectiveness of firefighting and emergency response operations and to improve firefighter health and safety programs. In 2005, the AFG also allows for nonfire based emergency medical services organizations to apply for grants.

The deadline for receipt of applications is 5:00 pm EST on April 8, 2005. The applications are automated and accessible via the AFG Web site at http://www.firegrantsupport.com/. This site contains background information on AFG program priorities and program guidance, an application tutorial, and more. Fire departments that have questions regarding these grant opportunities should contact the Help Desk at (866) 274-0960; e-mail: firegrants@dhs.gov.

12) Some New Web Resources

[Below are some new or updated Internet resources we've discovered. For an extensive list of useful Internet sites dealing with hazards, see http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/resources/.]

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory has put together this list of Web links related to the tsunami in the Indian Ocean on December 26, 2004.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has introduced a new Web site, entirely redesigned to better serve both the research and education community and the general public. Through the new site, the NSF hopes to more effectively explain its use of public funds and the results derived from it, while offering a user-friendly interface for its grantees and contractors.

Within days of the massive tsunami in the Indian Ocean in late 2004, teams of researchers rushed to survey the disaster, hoping to learn how such loss of life, property, and ecosystems could be prevented. This special report from the National Science Foundation describes some of the findings.

This special report from the National Science Foundation introduces the George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES), which was created to give researchers tools to learn how earthquakes and tsunami impact the buildings, bridges, utility systems, and other critical components of today’s society.

Technical assessment teams comprised of members of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Institution of Civil Engineers traveled to South Asia to study the catastrophic damage resulting from the recent earthquake and tsunami. Read their field reports here.

The National Organization on Disability’s Emergency Preparedness Initiative has released this “virtual binder” of materials related to the National Capital Region Conference on Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities.

Tsunamis: Monitoring, Detection, and Early Warning Systems, a report from the Congressional Research Service, was released in the wake of the Indian Ocean tsunami.

Presentations from the March 8, 2005, Disasters Roundtable Workshop Lessons Learned between Hurricanes: From Hugo to Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne are available here.

On January 10, 2005, a landslide struck the community of La Conchita, California, destroying or seriously damaging 36 houses and killing 10 people. This report from the U.S. Geological Survey provides a description of the La Conchita area and its landslide history, a comparison of the 1995 and 2005 landslides, and a discussion of continuing landslide hazards in the La Conchita area.

Presentations from Symposium 2005: Best Practices in Risk Reduction for Colleges and Universities, a two-day symposium/workshop for emergency professionals serving colleges and universities, are posted here.

The 1st International Coordination Meeting for the Development of a Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System for the Indian Ocean Within a Global Framework concluded on March 8, 2005, with the adoption of a communique outlining the proposed arrangements for the establishment of a Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System for the Indian Ocean region (IOTWS) and terms of reference for the Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the IOTWS. Access the communique, the terms of reference, and the meeting presentations here.

This document, Community Guidelines for Developing a Spontaneous Volunteer Plan, from Illinois Homeland Security was developed to help Illinois communities develop and execute a community spontaneous volunteer plan.

This Web site from the Environmental Health Services Branch of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Environmental Health serves as a clearinghouse of information resources related to emergency and terrorism preparedness for environmental health practitioners.

13) Conferences and Training

[Below are some recent announcements received by the Natural Hazards Center. A comprehensive list of upcoming hazards-related meetings and training is available from our Web site: http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/conf.html.]

The 11th International Conference of Fire Service Women. Organizer: Women in the Fire Service. Montgomery County, Maryland: March 29-April 3, 2005. Workshops and seminars at this education and networking event will provide leadership development, classroom education on fire and emergency medical services topics, hands-on training to improve job skills, tips on the promotional process, and information and guidance on gender and diversity issues. Organizers expect 450 to 500 women and men from all aspects of the urban, rural, and wildland fire service to participate. For more information, contact Women in the Fire Service, PO Box 5446, Madison, WI 53705; (608) 233-4768; e-mail: info@wfsi.org; http://www.wfsi.org/news_and_events/events.php?event_id=1.

Organizational and Business Continuity and Survival: How to Keep Your Business Going When Catastrophe Strikes. Host: Sonoma State University. San Rafael, California: April 7-8, 25-26, 2005. This course introduces organizational management strategies to avoid operating failures from natural and human-made hazards. Topics include how to identify threats to an organization, assess the impacts of interrupted operations, develop business continuation strategies, and structure responses to likely emergencies. For more information, contact Sonoma State University, School of Extended Education, 1801 East Cotati Avenue, Stevenson Hall 1012, Rohnert Park, CA 94928; (707) 664-2394; http://www.ssuexed.com/course.php?id=1055&sem=Spring&year=2005.

Rapid Environmental Impact Assessment (REA) in Disasters and Training of Trainers Workshop. Sponsors: Benfield Hazard Research Centre, CARE International. Arlington, Virginia: April 25-29, 2005. This workshop is specifically targeted to nongovernmental organization (NGO) personnel involved in postdisaster assessments and the planning and training of field staff. It will also benefit U.S. government and NGO representatives responsible for disaster preparedness and response planning. Environmentalists wishing to learn about environmental impact assessment in disasters will also benefit from the training. For more information, e-mail Charles Kelly, 72734.2412@compuserve.com.

First Regional Training Course on Disaster Mental Health. Organizer: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC). Bangkok, Thailand: May 23-27, 2005. This course aims to provide mental health professionals with the skills and understanding to begin to develop, implement, supervise, and manage psychological support programs in preparation for and in response to disaster. For more information, contact the Training and Education Division, ADPC, Asian Institute of Technology, PO Box 4 Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; e-mail: tedadpc@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net/.

Third International Symposium on Flood Defence (ISFD3). Nijmegen, The Netherlands: May 25-27, 2005. Combining presentations; discussions between scientists, managers, and representatives from flood management authorities; and field trips, this event will focus on floods from rivers (including flash floods), the disciplines needed to manage them (hydraulics as well as socioeconomics), and administrative aspects. For more information, contact Bureau Routine, Congress Office, PO Box 31 249, 6503 CE Nijmegen, The Netherlands; 31 (0)24 355 55 03; e-mail: info@isfd3.nl; http://www.isfd3.nl/.

International Symposium on the Geodynamics of Eastern Mediterranean: Active Tectonics of the Aegean. Host: Kadir Has University. Istanbul, Turkey: June 15-18, 2005. Among the 20+ symposium topics will be discussions on “Potential Source Regions and Tsunami Generation in the Mediterranean" and “Seismic Hazard, Risk, and Loss Scenarios in Earth Sciences.” Abstracts are due April 15. For more information, contact Tuncay Taymaz, Istanbul Technical University, Department of Geophysics-Seismology Section, Maslak-TR-34390, Istanbul, Turkey; (+90 212) 285 62 45; e-mail: taymaz@itu.edu.tr; http://www.earth.itu.edu.tr/.

13th Annual VOAD Conference. Hosts: National and Colorado Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD). Denver, Colorado: June 21-24, 2005. This year’s conference theme is “Ascending to New Heights” and will focus on the hurricane season of 2004, the National Response Plan, the National Incident Management System, volunteer management, donations management, recovery, government relations and legislation, emotional and spiritual care, and response, recovery, and relief. Presentation proposals are due March 25, 2005. For more information, contact Cathy Kissner of COVOAD at (970) 254-1011; http://www.nvoad.org/annualconf1.php.

13th Community Based Disaster Risk Management. Organizer: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC). Bangkok, Thailand: July 4-15, 2005. This course is an opportunity for practitioners to acquire tools and learn how to design and implement programs for reducing disaster risks and vulnerability and building community capacity to promote a “culture of safety.” Through exercises and simulations, participants will practice risk assessment and risk management planning. For more information, contact the Training and Education Division, ADPC, Asian Institute of Technology, PO Box 4, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; e-mail: tedadpc@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net/.

16th International Disaster Management Course. Organizer: Defence Academy of the United Kingdom, Cranfield University. Shrivenham, Wiltshire, UK: July 18-August 5, 2005. The aim of this course is to support the building of disaster management capacity at all levels within departments, agencies, organizations, and communities to improve their ability to manage the variety of disasters the world faces today. The course is designed for individuals with, or who anticipate having, disaster management responsibilities and who wish to improve their working knowledge of both theory and practice. For more information, contact Tony Moore, Cranfield University; e-mail: t.m.moore@cranfield.ac.uk; http://www.rmcs.cranfield.ac.uk/ddmsa/dmc/dm.pdf.

5th Annual Meeting of the European Meteorological Society (EMS), 7th European Conference on Applications of Meteorology (ECAM). Organizers: EMS, KNMI, MeteoConsult. Utrecht, The Netherlands: September 12-16, 2005. Themes of the EMS meeting will cover a broad number of subjects from research to technology related to applied atmospheric sciences. The central theme of the ECAM is meteorology and customer value with the intent of providing a platform where meteorological institutions, meteorological providers, and users of meteorological services can exchange their ideas, results, needs, and demands. For more information, contact the EMS Secretariat, Institute of Meteorology, Free University of Berlin, Carl-Heinrich-Becker-Weg 6-10, 12165 Berlin Germany; +49 30 7970 8328; e-mail: ems-sec@met.fu-berlin.de; http://www.copernicus.org/ems/2005/.

Seventh Regional Training Course on Flood Disaster Risk Management. Organizer: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC). Bangkok, Thailand: September 12-23, 2005. This course offers an integrated approach to the development of flood risk reduction strategies that involves engineering, settlement, development, public administration, community-based strategies, and land use planning (with environmental considerations). For more information, contact the Training and Education Division, ADPC, Asian Institute of Technology, PO Box 4 Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; e-mail: tedadpc@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net/.

250th Anniversary of the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake. Lisbon, Portugual: November 1-4, 2005. The 250th anniversary of the 1755 earthquake and tsunami presents the opportunity to bring together scientists, engineers, historians, philosophers, urban planners, architects, economists, and policy makers to foster an integrated view of our global perception of natural disasters and how society must deal with them. Abstracts are due April 30, 2005. For more information, contact Mundiconvenius, Rua do Embaixador, 13-2, 1300-215 Lisboa, Portugual; +351 21 364 94 98; e-mail: info@mundiconvenius.pt; http://www.mundiconvenius.pt/2005/lisbon1755/.

32nd Regional course on Disaster Management. Organizer: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC). Bangkok, Thailand: November 7-25, 2005. The purpose of the course is to provide comprehensive disaster management knowledge and skills to enhance the capabilities of professionals working in disaster management, development, and donor agencies to effectively integrate disaster management into their development programs and policies. For more information, contact the Training and Education Division, ADPC, Asian Institute of Technology, PO Box 4 Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; e-mail: tedadpc@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net/.

Questions for the readership and contributions to this e-newsletter are encouraged. Questions and messages should be indicated as such and sent to hazctr@colorado.edu.

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