2 October 2015 Higher Education Program News

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FEMA’s Higher Education Program Bits and Pieces

National Emergency Training Center, Emmitsburg, MD

2 October 2015
Higher Education Program News:

  • FEMA Emergency Management Higher Education Program Webinar Series – Session II

“Promoting Student Success through Partnerships in Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security”

October 15, 2015 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EDT

All across the United States, colleges and universities are welcoming students to the new 2015-16 school year. Many of those students have targeted emergency management or homeland security as a field of study and a first-choice career. In the Emergency Management Institute’s (EMI) second Higher Education Program webinar, Frederick Community College (FCC) will discuss the partnership between FCC’s Mid-Atlantic Center for Emergency Management, the Maryland State Department of Education’s Career and Technology Education Program, and the Statewide Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Council. This partnership is an effort designed to provide effective pathways from secondary to post-secondary programs, and produce graduates possessing the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that prepare them for work, life, and responsible citizenship.


Kathy L. Francis, MS, CEM, MPEM

Executive Director Program Manager

Mid-Atlantic Center for Emergency Management Maryland State Department of Education

Frederick Community College Career and Technology Education Program

William Pratesi, Instructor

Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Pathway

Applications and Research Laboratory

Jeanne-Marie Holly

Program Manager

Maryland State Department of Education

Career and Technology Education Program

Steve Filyo, Chairman

Statewide Homeland Security and

Emergency Preparedness Committee


1. Develop and provide oversight of a Statewide Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Advisory Council.

2. Unite secondary and post-secondary educators to share best practices and discuss challenges of the learning environment.

3. Unite educators with industry professionals to discuss current workforce needs.

4. Expose secondary and post-secondary educators to current topics, innovative trends, and case studies in the field.

5. Involve students in internships, special events, projects, and employment opportunities.

Registration: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/e4wj0hrp7cw/event/registration.html

For additional information: contact Lillian Virgil, Chief, Mitigation Branch, Emergency Management Institute, Lillian.Virgil@fema.dhs.gov or call 301-447-1490.

  • EM Hi Ed Webinar Series:

The Higher Education Program is continuing with the webinar series started in 2013.  The webinars will be used to increase the flow of information and knowledge to the emergency management higher education community.  Knowing what is important and essential to your programs is important.  To that end, we request that you provide us topics that are of particular interest and necessary to your academic programs or your institution.  Ideas for webinar topics may be sent to Lillian Virgil at Lillian.virgil@fema.dhs.gov.

  • 18th Annual Emergency Management Higher Education Symposium is scheduled for June 6-9, 2016 at the National Emergency Training Center, Emmitsburg, MD. Mark your calendars now. Information for the 2016 symposium will be posted to the Hi Ed website in the coming months.

  • New Look for the Hi Ed Weekly Report:

Work on a new look for the Hi Ed weekly report will begin soon. I’ll continue to provide you with all the fantastic information sent to me each week but hopefully a new design will make it easier for readers to scan and pick out important information. If you have any great ideas that you would like to see implemented let me know. The general idea is to make the pages more user friendly. We won’t be able to use all suggestions because we do have FEMA standards to uphold but we would like to keep our customers happy so all will at least be considered. Please send any and all suggestions to me at Barbara.Johnson3@fema.dhs.gov. Thanks.

College/University News and Information:

  • Erie Community College Emergency Management AS Degree Program

Erie Community College (ECC) is proud to announce that its Emergency Management Associates Degree program is adding an on-line degree program. Courses will be on-line on a per semester basis.

The Emergency Management Program prepares students with the knowledge and strategic managerial skills necessary to ensure a secure and resilient nation to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, recover from the effects of any potential technical, natural disaster, and acts of terrorism including cyber security events.
For information about the program, please contact the following:
Department Chairman: Dr. Rosa Gonzalez, Office #: (716) 851-1622,

E-mail address: gonzalezr@ecc.edu

  • Global academic health, safety, and security scoping survey

Many of our campuses are expanding their global presence through study abroad opportunities, global research programs and activities, and international university collaborations. While these programs and activities provide great academic and institutional value to universities, many universities are confronting the uncharted risks of operating overseas.

To better understand how public safety and emergency management professionals perceive risks and emerging issues associated with academic global programs and activities, the National Center for Campus Public Safety (NCCPS) is collaborating with the Disaster Resilient Universities Network (DRU), University of Oregon- Community Service Center, and the International Association of Emergency Managers ? Universities & Colleges Caucus (IAEM-UCC). Together, we will develop a white paper that summarizes key issues and proposes actions that NCCPS, DRU, IAEM-UCC, and our partners can take to address the emerging issues.
As part of the project, we are conducting this scoping survey. Questions in this survey seek to understand existing practices, how campus public safety and emergency management is involved, and future needs in university global programs and activities. The survey should take 10 minutes to complete and will help inform discussions of an emerging issues focus group we are hosting in mid-October.
Please find and complete the survey here:


If you have questions about the purpose of the survey and how we will use the results, please contact Kim (krichmond@nccpsafety.com) or Andre (leduc@uoregon.edu).

  • Maturing Public-Private Partnerships

The Mid-Atlantic Center for Emergency Management (MACEM) at Frederick Community College (FCC) is extending an invitation to emergency management professions for the pilot of the new three-day workshop focused on Maturing Public-Private Partnerships.

This FREE workshop is being presented at the Hampton Inn at 1565 Opossumtown Pike, Frederick, Maryland, near the FCC campus.  The Workshop will meet from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm on Monday, November 4th, through Friday, November 6th.
The purpose of the Workshop is to enhance the capabilities of federal, regional, state, tribal, and local jurisdictions as whole communities working together to apply innovative techniques and strategies for public-private partnerships that bolster societal security, resilience, and preparedness for all hazards. The Workshop will:

  • Provide lessons learned and training tools for building strong public-private partnerships.

  • Promote collaboration, coordination, and communication efforts between government and private sector partners.

  • Increase the effectiveness of emergency management and homeland security efforts in the public and private sectors by increasing all partners’ understanding of each other’s capabilities and preparedness efforts.

  • Identify the legal structures involved in establishing non-contractual relationships with the private sector.

  • Develop a personalized process model for the design, implementation, administration, sustainment, and evaluation of emergency management public-private partnerships.

The Workshop is designed to provide emergency managers with the knowledge and skills to develop, implement, administer, sustain, and evaluate public-private partnerships in emergency management. While the concept of partnership is not new to emergency management, there continues to be challenges in developing common goals and commitment that sustain successful emergency management partnerships. Successful partnerships will have a positive outcome on community and national security and resiliency through the more effective utilization of resources.

The Workshop is offered as part of a FEMA Homeland Security National Training Program through Continuing Training Grants Office. This is an opportunity to participate in an exciting learning event at no cost. 
To register for the November 4-6 pilot, contact MACEM@Frederick.edu. Space is limited so please apply as soon as convenient.  For questions contact us at 240-629-7970.
Emergency Management/Homeland Security News:

  • Disaster Contracting: FEMA Needs to Cohesively Manage Its Workforce and Fully Address Post-Katrina Reforms

GAO-15-783: Published: Sep 29, 2015. Publicly Released: Sept 29, 2015.
“What GAO Found
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has more than tripled the number of contracting officers it employs since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, but it does not have a sufficient process in place to prioritize disaster workload and cohesively manage its workforce. Some of the workforce growth is attributed to the establishment of the Disaster Acquisition Response Team (DART) in 2010, which has the primary mission of deploying to provide disaster contracting support, such as contracting for blankets or debris removal. DART has gradually assumed responsibility for administering the majority of disaster contract spending, but FEMA does not have a process for prioritizing the team's work during disasters. Without such a process, FEMA is at risk of developing gaps in contract oversight during major disasters. Further, in 2011, FEMA established an agreement that regional contracting officers would report to headquarters supervisors for technical oversight while continuing to respond to regional supervisors—who have responsibility for administrative duties—for everyday operations. This agreement has led to challenges for FEMA in cohesively managing its workforce, including heightening the potential for an environment of competing interests for the regional contracting officers. Further, FEMA has not revisited this agreement on annual basis as called for in the agreement. As a result, it does not incorporate lessons learned since its creation 4 years ago.
FEMA has not fully implemented 2006 Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act (PKEMRA) contracting reforms due in part to incomplete guidance.”
To access the full report: http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-15-783

  • Disaster Information Outreach by Librarians DISASTR-OUTREACH-LIB@LIST.NIH.GOV

October 8, 2015 at 1:30 pm ET – Stress and the Relaxation Response

WHEN:  Thursday, October 8, 2015 at 1:30 PM ET  


WHO CAN PARTICIPATE:  The Disaster Information Specialist monthly webinar is free and open to everyone – please spread the word and invite others in your organizations, send to your email lists, and post to your social media accounts.


TOPICS:  “Stress and the Relaxation Response”

Stress is a very common reaction to disasters and humanitarian crises. Disaster-related stress affects the local population as well as the professionals and volunteers responding to a disaster. Even in the absence of a disaster, over 60% of visits (for any reason) to health care professionals are caused or exacerbated by stress for which there is no effective pharmacologic or procedural therapy. This presentation will focus on a counter-stress capacity - the relaxation response. Its elicitation effectively counteracts stress and is therapeutic for a multitude of stress-related disorders. The relaxation response will be defined historically and physiologically. Its genomic underpinnings as well as its dramatic impact on health care resource utilization will be described.


Herbert Benson, MD, Director Emeritus Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, Mind Body Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School; Manoj Bhasin, PhD, Director of Bioinformatics, Co-Director of Genomics, Proteomics, Bioinformatics and Systems Biology Center , Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Assistant Professor of Medicine Harvard Medical School; James E. Stahl, MD, CM, MPH, Section Chief, General Internal Medicine Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Associate Professor of Medicine Geisel School of Medicine.
To join the meeting at 1:30 pm ET, Thursday, October 8, click on https://nih.webex.com/nih/onstage/g.php?d=624935657&t=a

Event number: 624 935 657

Event password: 1234

Or, if you are in the area you can attend the meeting in person at our offices at 6707 Democracy Blvd, Bethesda, MD, Suite 440. Park in the visitor's parking lot (we will validate your parking), walk to the middle building (Democracy Two) and take the elevator to the 4th floor. Suite 440 is around the corner behind the elevators.


MORE INFORMATION:  For more information on this and past meetings, see http://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/dimrc/dismeetings.html   

Guide to finding health information on Coping with Disasters, Violence and Traumatic Events, http://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/dimrc/coping.html


The National Library of Medicine (https://www.nlm.nih.gov) is the world’s largest biomedical library and provides extensive online health information resources. Visit the NLM Disaster Information Management Research Center site (http://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov) to learn more about disaster-related health information resources and tools.

  • Hurricane Joaquin Update

As of late Friday morning, it appears that Hurricane Joaquin will not pose a direct threat to the United States in terms of a land-falling tropical cyclone.  However, its indirect affects will still have potentially catastrophic affects throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.  First and foremost, Joaquin is pumping a tremendous stream of tropical moisture into the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic as we speak TODAY.  That “fire hose” of moisture is interacting with a front stretched along the Appalachian Mountain region.  This will squeeze all those moisture out over most of the region.  Forecast rainfall estimates for portions of South Carolina are calling for a widespread 10-15 inches, with isolated amounts up to 20+ inches today, Saturday and Sunday.  All this while Joaquin is hundreds of miles away.  Heavy rainfall is also predicted well up the Northeast into Maine.  This is all on top of the record rainfall that occurred in many areas earlier this week.  So the “BIG HEADLINE” potential and primary focus should be on the inland flooding threat over a very large area.  The National Weather Service is using words like “record”, “historic”, and “potentially catastrophic” to describe this threat. 

Additionally, coastal flooding and beach erosion is a major concern along the entire Atlantic coast from Florida to Maine.  Lunar cycles have resulted in very high tides, which has resulted in some coastal flooding.  The secondary affect is that all that torrential rainfall cannot drain into the ocean, resulting in exacerbated inland flooding.  Extreme beach erosion is tearing away at the beaches, but there hasn’t been too much discussion about impacts to structures.
Lastly, the pressure gradient between Joaquin and a high pressure in Canada is generating strong winds along the East Coast.  While these wind speeds aren’t enough to cause damage to structures, when combined with saturated soils, it can be enough to push whole trees (roots and all) over, taking down power lines, blocking roads, and falling on vehicles and structures.
Bottom line… Even though it looks like Joaquin will remain safely offshore, he is combining with other weather features to reach out and make his presence known hundreds to thousands of miles away.  Coordination with your local National Weather Service office is most critical to specify local impacts.
Dave Bujak - dbujak@admin.fsu.edu
Director of Emergency Management

Florida State University

A division of FSU Public Safety and Police Department

  • IAEM Dispatch, October 1, 2015

Register for the Oct. 7 IAEM Think Tank on the Integrated Public Alert Warning System
The subject of the next IAEM Think Tank, scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015, 12:30-2:00 p.m. EDT, is the Integrated Public Alert Warning System. IPAWS is the United States solution for effectively communicating emergency alerts and warnings, and is available for use by Local, State, Territorial, Tribal, and Federal public alerting authorities to send emergency messages to the public in the geographic area of their jurisdiction. IPAWS provides authenticated emergency alert and warning messaging from emergency officials to the public through: radio and television via the Emergency Alert System (EAS); cellular phones via Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA); NOAA All Hazards National Weather Radio (NWR) via IPAWS-NOAA gateway; Internet applications and websites via the IPAWS All-Hazards Information Feed; Unique systems (e.g. sirens, digital road signs, text-to-Braille translators, subscription mass notification systems, etc.); and emerging technologies that adhere to the Common Alerting Protocol Standards. Presenters will include: Ben Krakauer and Henry Jackson, New York City Office of Emergency Management; Dean Flener, Tennessee Emergency Management Agency; Paul Lupe, Fairfax County Office of Emergency Management; and Lillian McDonald, ECHO Minnesota/Twin Cities Public Television. See speaker bios, and register online here.
Register today for the Emergency Management & Business Contingency Summit in Dubai
IAEM members have the opportunity to attend an extraordinary event in Dubai, United Arab Emirates — the Emergency Management & Business Contingency Summit, Oct. 7-8, 2015, at the Habtoor Grand Beach Resort & Spa. The International Quality & Productivity Centre (IQPC) and IAEM are the hosts of the summit. The summit will present attendees with the information they need to meet the new challenges that lie ahead and an opportunity to network with their peers participating at all levels. The summit features a panel of experts presenting a variety of topics from national security, critical infrastructure protection, emergency response, enterprise risk management, fire safety, and civil defense contingency planning. Download the agenda to find out more, and visit the event site for details and registration.
Save $100 until Oct. 13 on IAEM Annual Conference registration fees
The early bird discount on IAEM Annual Conference registration ends Oct. 13, 2015. Take advantage of a $100 cost savings by registering now for the IAEM 63rd Annual Conference & EMEX in Clark County, Nevada, Nov. 13-18, 2015. For a breakdown of registration fees, visit our conference website. Even if your budget isn't approved yet, lock in your rate today and indicate pay by check on your registration form. Do you need more discounts? If so, work your registration fee off by registering as conference staff. The detailed conference program is available online.
The IAEM Annual Conference offers the opportunity to maximize your emergency management training
Arrive early and stay late at the IAEM 63rd Annual Conference & EMEX to obtain additional emergency management training. In addition to attending the three main days of the IAEM Annual Conference, which is packed with dynamic sessions and speakers, you will find many opportunities to learn both before and after the conference. There is limited space left in the following training sessions: L0290 Basic Public Information Officer; L0948 Situational Awareness and Common Operating Picture; L0205 Recovery from Disaster, the Local Government Role; L0146 Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Training Course; L0197 Integrating Access and Functional Needs into Emergency Planning; L0235 Emergency Planning, Maximizing Your Disaster Cost Recovery; Universities and Colleges Emergency Managers Practitioners Symposium; 2015 Leadership Symposium: Strategic Leadership and Opportunities; L0387 Joint Information System/Center Planning for Tribal, State, and Local Public Information Officers; Persuade! A course on presenting for emergency managers; CEM®/AEM Certification Offerings; and the EMAP Training Course. Find out more and register today!
Indonesia: President says at least 3 years needed to tackle deadly haze
Yahoo News UK
In worrisome revelations Indonesia President Joko Widodo has said that it would take almost three more years to end the massive annual forest fires causing the perilous haze in the south-east Asian region. The preceding smog has led to unprecedented levels of haze intensified by smoke in the past few weeks. Widodo told BBC, "We've been dealing with this problem for quite some time now. But this isn't a problem you can solve so quickly. It requires a lot of physical ground work on the land tracts which will take time."
Earthquake, tsunami in Chile: Response action plan approved
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has approved use of the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund, as requested by the Chilean Red Cross. The targeted use of the DREF is provide humanitarian aid to 450 families affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami throughout the provinces of Choapa, Elqui and Limari, communities of Canela, Illapel, Coquimbo, and Monte Patria, and the towns of Canela Baja, Illapel, Gabriela, Baquedano, Peñuela and Tulahuen.
Nuclear emergency response? A new FEMA NIMS-type position can help: your feedback is needed!
During radiological and nuclear emergencies, routine decisions and operations for state and local response agencies become increasingly complex. These actions require radiation experts to safeguard the public and responders. Through the creation of a new position called the Radiological Operations Support Specialist (ROSS), the Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and Energy (DOE) want to train and certify radiation experts to integrate with the incident command system during a radiological response. These ROSS positions will directly support the incident commander, emergency managers, agency decision makers, and elected officials. The ROSS will be a technical specialist under the National Incident Management Systems (NIMS). FEMA needs your help to determine the appropriate skills, knowledge, and abilities as well as the training and tools necessary for the ROSS position to succeed. Please download additional materials and provide feedback.
FEMA seeks comments on proposed Stafford Act Section 705 policy
FEMA seeks public comments from state, local, tribal and territorial governments, private non-profit organizations, and interested members of the public regarding the agency's proposed policy describing guidelines FEMA will follow when implementing Section 705 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act). The proposed policy applies to all potential recoveries of payments made to state, Indian tribal government, or local government recipients and details how FEMA will determine whether Stafford Act Section 705 bars FEMA from recovering assistance payments. Comments are due Nov. 2, 2015, and should be submitted online.
FirstNet reports recent activities and upcoming meetings of interest
The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board will convene several open meetings on Oct. 1-2, 2015, with details posted here. The agenda and materials are being finalized for the upcoming Single Points of Contact (SPOC) meeting on Oct. 7-8, 2015, in Westminster, Colorado, with more than 125 attendees from 50 states and territories registered to attend. This week, FirstNet participated in the Arizona and Virginia initial consultation meetings, the association staff briefing, the PSAC EC meeting, the FirstNet Committee and Board meetings, Regional Broadband Summit, the annual West Virginia Statewide Interoperability Conference, a coordination meeting with Health and Human Services (HHS), an International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) webinar, and the South and North Dakota Combined Law Enforcement Conference. To date, FirstNet has held 50 initial state consultation meetings, involving more than 3,400 public safety representatives. Future consultations are confirmed for: Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (Oct. 20), Guam (Oct. 22), and Oklahoma (Oct. 28). An updated schedule can be viewed on the website tracker. Download the FirstNet weekly update here.
A city crowdsources disaster response expertise
Cotopaxi is currently spewing ash. The last large-scale eruption was in 1877, and it is believed that another one is now inevitable. If it erupts, some communities will have less than half an hour to evacuate. The scale of the challenge is overwhelming. City Officials have to plan for large-scale evacuation. Yet there are those with expertise in behavioral insights — so-called "nudges" — who have proven advice to share about how to communicate to avoid mass panic. With too much to do and not enough time to prepare, the City of Quito, Ecuador wants to use the Internet to crowdsource expertise from around the world.
How human stampedes, like the one near Mecca, turn deadly*
The Washington Post
A stampede near the holy city of Mecca left more than 700 people dead, with hundreds more injured and the death toll still rising. The stampede, which occurred during the peak of the annual hajj pilgrimage, is just the latest in a regular string of such events at the site — but it's the deadliest one in 25 years. It's hard to imagine how a crowd — especially one gathered for a peaceful religious rite — can turn so deadly. But the phenomenon is so common that experts in crowd management are consulted for most highly trafficked events.
How games are changing federal disaster response
For more than a year, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency has been refining its open-source disaster mapping system, GeoQ. The system lets first responders document damage — tornado wreckage, for instance — and upload geo-tagged images to an open, crowdsourced, searchable map, helping to ensure responders aren't duplicating their clean-up and rescue efforts.
Engineering for disaster
University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
A new NCAR-facilitated group aims to develop the know-how and tools for building resilient systems that can recover smoothly when catastrophic weather and climate events strike. The group, the Engineering for Climate Extremes Partnership, is building relationships with experts from a broad array of sectors, from engineering to business, government, academia, and American Indian tribal and community leadership. The common thread is concern for the mounting toll taken by extreme weather events, which is expected to worsen with climate change.
Behind hurricane forecasts: Computer models and climate patterns
The Wall Street Journal
More than two months remain in this year's hurricane season, but with the most treacherous weeks behind us, it looks like the storm forecasters who predicted a mild year got it right. Such a forecast is noteworthy because since 1995 only three other seasons have been below normal. Predicting the number of hurricanes months in advance is tough under any circumstances. Forecasters must assess critical weather patterns that suppress or encourage storms, and some patterns may not have emerged early in the year when hurricane experts put out their first seasonal forecasts.
Certification review packet notifications will be released this month
Online applications received at IAEM Headquarters by Aug. 31, 2015 are in the process of being reviewed by the CEM® Commission. Candidates will be notified of the results through the online system during the week of Oct. 18, 2015.
IAEM website hosts Document Exchange for sharing documents with members
IAEM members are invited to upload documents that they wish to share with other members through the IAEM Document Exchange. Share documents you have created that would help other members, such as: exercise plans, training curricula, incident action plans, preparedness and community outreach materials, and EOC design plans. You can search for documents here. To upload documents, select the area that most closely reflects the type of document: Exercises, EOCs, Training; Incident Action; and Other. One of the greatest benefits of joining IAEM is that our association is the largest network of top emergency management experts who can offer solutions, guidance and assistance. One way that active IAEM members can contribute to this network is to share documents through the IAEM Document Exchange.
Massachusetts Department of Public Health publishes 'Access and Functional Needs Resource Guide'
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health's Office of Preparedness and Emergency Management on Sept. 24 released its "Access and Functional Needs Resource Guide," a compilation of resources to assist in public health preparedness planning for individuals with disabilities and others with access and functional needs. The guide, which will be updated quarterly, can be downloaded here.
American Humane Association names Randy Collins, CEM, as national director of Red Star Rescue for Animals
IAEM member Randy Collins, CEM, has been named as the new national director of Red Star Rescue for Animals, a program of the American Humane Association that since 1916 has led hundreds of domestic and international emergency aid efforts to animals following disasters, during wartime, and in other significant events challenging local community resources. Collins' history in emergency management includes work with DHS, FEMA, incident management, law enforcement, and the armed forces. He has served as EM specialist for Southern California Edison; is president of the All Hazards Incident Management Teams Association; and is a former K-9 law enforcement officer. During his tenure as an executive with the Indiana Department of Homeland Security, he established the Indiana Incident Management Program and commanded the state's Incident Management Assistance Team. He previously served as deputy director of preparedness and operations, and was a police office in the Town of Mooresville. Collins served in the U.S. Marine Corps for six years on active duty and six years in the reserves. Learn more.
HHS/ASPR launches resources system to improve disaster preparedness
The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services' (HHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response (ASPR) on Sept. 30 announced the Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (TRACIE) has been implemented. Health and emergency preparedness professionals now have access to the nation's first and most comprehensive system of resources designed specifically to help communities better prepare for and manage the health impacts of disasters. TRACIE features resource materials, a help line, just-in-time suggestions, and tools to share information gleaned from real-life experiences in preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters. ASPR developed TRACIE with a network of experts nationwide to address needs identified by stakeholders charged with preparing for public health and health care system emergencies. Users can get advice, including just-in-time advice, from hundreds of health care, disaster medicine, public health and public safety professionals, through ASPR TRACIE. TRACIE's free registration allows users to rate the usefulness of the technical resources, assistance center, and information exchange.
500-year-floods to inundate NYC every 24 years
U.S. News & World Report
Get ready for Hurricane Sandy's sequels. Severe floods — the kind likely to occur only every 500 years — may now strike every 24.4 years in the New York City area thanks to climate change, according to a new study. As glaciers and polar ice have melted — sending sea levels higher — the average flood height has risen by about 4 feet in the area, the study says. Meanwhile, strong tropical storms have only gotten more frequent and more intense, blowing the higher waters inland and producing devastating storm surges more often.
Report: Asia hit hardest by natural disasters in 2014
Asia was the continent hit hardest by natural disasters in 2014, with China getting the worst of it with 58 million people affected, according to an annual report released in Geneva. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said in its 2015 World Disasters Report that while there were 317 natural disasters reported worldwide in 2014, it was actually the lowest number of the decade. Disasters caused 8,186 deaths worldwide in 2014, but that mortality rate is the lowest since 1986 (7,303), and 90 percent lower than the decade average.
Conditions ripe for explosive wildfire season in Southern California
Los Angeles Times
With thousands of homes burned and at least a half-dozen people dead, 2015 is already shaping up to be one of California's most challenging fire seasons. But so far, much of the action has been in Northern California, where several destructive fires have marched through large swaths of drought-parched lands. Now, the fire season moves to Southern California, which tends to have its biggest fires in the fall as Santa Ana winds kick up. While the drought has gotten much attention as a cause of recent fires, a new study documents how the dry, fierce "devil winds" have been the real destructive factor in the region.
SDG Summit: Curbing disaster risk key for aid*
Disaster risk reduction needs to be included squarely in humanitarian aid programmes and development policies, given its power to save lives and money, delegates at the United Nations sustainable development summit heard. In a wide-ranging debate on how to ensure that aid has a sustainable impact, a string of speakers said that curbing the risks posed by natural hazards such as drought and man-made factors including violence was an essential piece of the puzzle, and made far more sense than picking up the pieces after a disaster.
2016 Nice Global Forum on Homeland Security & Crisis Management to be held Feb. 2-5
The 2016 Nice Global Forum on Homeland Security & Crisis Management (NGF 2016), set for Feb. 2-5, 2016, in Nice, France, offers a unique opportunity to share views, experiences and knowledge in the fields of homeland security threats and natural disasters, with 30 international premier speakers, key opinion leaders from the industry, government and academia, and a distinguished committee led by Prof. Boaz Ganor, Alain Bauer, Judge Jean-Louis Bruguière, and Prof. Brian Michael Jenkins. The event features special networking events, such as lunch with mayors from more than 30 countries (optional), in addition to an opening keynote address from the French government, 12 practical workshops led by world experts, and interactive panel sessions. View the preliminary program and learn more about Nice Global Forum 2016.

DHS will hold a public roundtable and listening session on Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards Appendix A on Oct. 27
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Protection and Programs Directorate, Office of Infrastructure Protection, Infrastructure Security Compliance Division, is hosting a public roundtable and listening session on Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) Appendix A, which is scheduled for Oct. 27, 2015, 8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., with the listening session set to begin at 1:00 p.m. The event will take place at the National Training Center, 1310 North Courthouse Road, Suite 600, Arlington, Virginia. DHS previously invited public comment on an advance notice of proposed rulemaking for potential revisions to the CFATS regulations 6 CFR Part 27 docket number DHS-2014-0016. The comment period closed on October 17, 2014. As part of an ongoing effort to strengthen the CFATS program, DHS is inviting members of the public to provide additional comments on Appendix A, "Chemicals of Interest." Appendix A contains a list of chemicals that, if possessed in greater than a designated threshold amount, indicate a facility is potentially high-risk. This meeting will provide DHS with an opportunity to hear recommendations for possible changes from interested members of the public. Those who wish to submit comments may do so by one of the following methods: provide verbal comments during the afternoon listening session; submit comments online at the Federal eRulemaking Portal; or mail comments to DHS National Protection and Programs Directorate, Office of Infrastructure Protection, Infrastructure Security Compliance Division, 245 Murray Lane, Mail Stop 0610, Arlington, Virginia 20528-0610. Registration is free of charge at this link, beginning in late September, on a space available basis. For those who cannot attend in person, information on how to register for a webinar and teleconference line will be available prior to the event. More information will be available here. Please contact CFATS@hq.dhs.gov with any questions.
Save the date for the 18th Annual EM Higher Education Symposium, June 6-9, 2016
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recently announced that the 18th Annual Emergency Management Higher Education Symposium will be held June 6-9, 2016, at the Emergency Management Institute, National Emergency Training Center, in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Details will be posted here when available.
Joaquin becomes Category 1 hurricane
Joaquin strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane in the Atlantic, poised to pound the central Bahamas with heavy rain and dangerous storm surges. Whether it will hit the eastern United States is an open question, but it eventually could at least send rain to a mid-Atlantic region already dealing with flooding concerns. Joaquin strengthened from a tropical storm, with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph (120 kph). Its center churned 245 miles (395 kilometers) east-northeast of the central Bahamas.
Alabama and Florida hit by floods after historic Gulf Coast downpour
NBC News
Historic rainfall along the Gulf Coast turned roads into canals and parking lots into lakes — and no letup was expected Monday. Mobile, Alabama, saw its 10th wettest day since records began in 1871, according to Weather Channel lead meteorologist Kevin Roth. The city was drenched by more than 7.5 inches of rain Sunday. The deluge was still going strong early Monday, also soaking areas of the Florida Panhandle, while a separate system of heavy rain was hitting parts of Louisiana and Texas.

Tornado damages homes in South Carolina
USA Today
A tornado near Charleston, S.C., caused severe damage in the West Ashley and Johns Island areas, according to reports. Charleston County Sheriff's Office said there was "significant property damage" on Johns Island, but that no injuries were as yet reported. National Weather Service Meteorologist Douglas Berry said radar and damage reports indicated a tornado probably touched down in Charleston County. Siding was ripped off homes and trees were downed.
Super typhoon kills 3, injures hundreds in Taiwan
Agence France-Presse via Gulf News
Super typhoon Dujuan has killed three people and left more than 300 injured in Taiwan, authorities said after it swept across the island before making landfall in eastern China. Many of those injured in Taiwan were hit by flying debris or involved in traffic accidents, the Emergency Operation Centre said, putting the death toll at three and the number of injured at 346.

India, Pakistan say some 1100 killed in Saudi hajj disaster
The Associated Press via U.S. News & World Report
Saudi Arabia has given foreign diplomats some 1,100 photographs of the dead from the recent hajj crush and stampede, Indian and Pakistani authorities said, an indication of a significantly higher death toll than previously offered by the kingdom. Saudi officials could not be immediately reached for comment about the discrepancy in the toll of the disaster in Mina. The Saudi Health Ministry's latest figures put the toll at 769 people killed and 934 injured.
Thousands left without power after 10,000 lightning strikes hit Brisbane as a vicious thunderstorm crashes through Queensland's south-east
Daily Mail
More than 4,500 homes in Brisbane have been left without power after a severe storm hit the Queensland capital. Properties were without power after 10,000 lightning strikes hit the city of Brisbane. Flights at Brisbane Airport were also delayed in the chaos, while reports of road accidents were recorded in the Chermside, Greenslopes and Auchenflower area, reported 9news.
*Article contributed by the Emergency Manager's Weekly Report.
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  • Naval Postgraduate School - Greta E. Marlatt; gmarlatt@nps.edu/; September 14, 2015

New or Updated Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports:

  • Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA’s Regulatory Program. 97-290

  • The FY2016 Continuing Resolution (H.J. Res 61), CRS Insight. IN10148

  • Copyright Law Restrictions on a Consumer's Right to Repair Cars and Tractors, CRS Legal Sidebar. repair

  • Extreme Weather Events and Government Compensation, CRS Legal Sidebar. Xweather

  • Third Circuit Affirms the FTC's Authority to Regulate Data Security as an Unfair Trade Practice, CRS Legal Sidebar. ftcauth

  • Unfunded Mandates Reform Act: History, Impact, and Issues. R40957

  • The Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA): Workers' Compensation for Federal Employees. R42107

  • Conservation Compliance and U.S. Farm Policy. R42459

  • Energy Tax Policy: Issues in the 114th Congress. R43206

  • Current Debates over Exchange Rates: Overview and Issues for Congress. R43242

  • U.S. Trade in Services: Trends and Policy Issues. R43291

  • The FY2014 Government Shutdown: Economic Effects. R43292

  • The Debt Limit Since 2011. R43389

  • EPA and the Army Corps’ Rule to Define “Waters of the United States” R43455

  • Natural Disasters and Hazards: CRS Experts. R43519

  • Recently Expired Community Assistance-Related Tax Provisions (“Tax Extenders”): In Brief. R43541

  • Recent Developments in the Job Corps Program: Frequently Asked Questions. R43611

  • FY2016 Agriculture and Related Agencies Appropriations: In Brief. R43938

  • Federal Credit Programs: Comparing Fair Value and the Federal Credit Reform Act (FCRA). R44193

  • Finding Quotes for Speeches: Fact Sheet. R44200

  • DOT's Federal Pipeline Safety Program: Background and Key Issues for Congress. R44201

  • Federal Disaster Assistance Response and Recovery Programs: Brief Summaries. RL31734

Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

  • Climate Sensitivity Uncertainty: When is Good News Bad? http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/files/dp76_freeman-wagner-zeckhauser-2.pdf

  • How Much Carbon Pricing is in Countries' Own Interests? The Critical Role of Co-Benefits http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/files/dp77_parry-veung-heine.pdf

Brennan Center for Justice

  • Case for Voter Registration Modernization in 2015 http://www.brennancenter.org/sites/default/files/publications/Case_For_Voter_Registration_Modernization_2015.pdf

Center for Climate and Energy Solutions

  • Weathering the Next Storm: A Closer Look at Business Resilience http://www.c2es.org/docUploads/weathering-the-next-storm-report-09-2015.pdf

    • Infographic http://www.c2es.org/publications/weathering-next-storm-closer-look-business-resilience-infographic

Congress. House. Oversight & Governmental Reform Committee

  • The State of the Cloud https://oversight.house.gov/hearing/oversight-it-subcommittee-committee-to-examine-cloud-solutions/

Congress. Senate. Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee

  • Examining the Use of Agency Regulatory Guidance http://www.hsgac.senate.gov/hearings/examining-the-use-of-agency-regulatory-guidance

Congressional Budget Office

  • Projections of Federal Receipts and Expenditures in the National Income and Product Accounts https://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/114th-congress-2015-2016/reports/50819-NIPA.pdf

European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center

  • Migrant crisis triggers fears over increase of terrorism threat in Western Europe http://www.esisc.org/upload/publications/briefings/9770/Migrant%20crisis.pdf

National Academies Press

  • The Growing Gap in Life Expectancy by Income: Implications for Federal Programs and Policy Responses http://www.nap.edu/catalog/19015/the-growing-gap-in-life-expectancy-by-income-implications-for

UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR)

  • Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction http://www.unisdr.org/we/coordinate/sendai-framework

White House

  • FACT SHEET: Promoting Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/27/fact-sheet-promoting-gender-equality-and-womens-empowerment

  • FACT SHEET: U.S.-China Economic Relations https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/25/fact-sheet-us-china-economic-relations

  • FACT SHEET: U.S. Global Development Policy and Agenda 2030 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/27/fact-sheet-us-global-development-policy-and-agenda-2030

  • FACT SHEET: The United States and China Issue Joint Presidential Statement on Climate Change with New Domestic Policy Commitments and a Common Vision for an Ambitious Global Climate Agreement in Paris https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/25/fact-sheet-united-states-and-china-issue-joint-presidential-statement

  • National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice's As Prepared Remarks on the U.S.-China Relationship at George Washington University https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/21/national-security-advisor-susan-e-rices-prepared-remarks-us-china

  • Remarks by President Obama and President Xi of the People's Republic of China in Joint Press Conference https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/25/remarks-president-obama-and-president-xi-peoples-republic-china-joint

  • Remarks by the President at Armed Forces Farewell Ceremony for General Martin Dempsey https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/25/remarks-president-armed-forces-farewell-ceremony-general-martin-dempsey

  • Statement by National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice on New PEPFAR Targets https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/09/26/statement-national-security-advisor-susan-e-rice-new-pepfar-targets

 Employment Information:

  • Training Specialist – FEMA/EMI

A vacancy announcement has been posted for a Training Specialist, GS-1712-13 in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), National Preparedness Directorate (NPD), Emergency Management Institute (EMI).

OPEN: October 1, 2015   /   CLOSE: October 14, 2015

Training Specialist


Training Specialist


Thank you and have a mellow weekend,
Barbara L. Johnson

Higher Education Program Assistant


Department of Homeland Security

16825 S. Seton Avenue, K016

Emmitsburg, MD 21727

Ph.: (301) 447-1452


FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.”
FEMA and the EMI Higher Education Program do not endorse any non-government Web sites, companies or applications.

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