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Blanchard’s Dirty Baker’s Dozen Why The U.S. Needs a New Approach to Hazards and Emergency Management B.Wayne Blanchard, Ph.D., CEM Emergency Management.

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Presentation on theme: "Blanchard’s Dirty Baker’s Dozen Why The U.S. Needs a New Approach to Hazards and Emergency Management B.Wayne Blanchard, Ph.D., CEM Emergency Management."— Presentation transcript:

1 Blanchard’s Dirty Baker’s Dozen Why The U.S. Needs a New Approach to Hazards and Emergency Management B.Wayne Blanchard, Ph.D., CEM Emergency Management Higher Education Project Manager Federal Emergency Management Agency National Emergency Training Center, Emergency Management Institute Emmitsburg, Maryland 21727

2 “The Time Has Come For A New National Approach To Natural Hazards” (Congressional Natural Hazards Caucus, Jan 2001)

3 3 Point 1 Disaster Losses Are Enormous

4 4 Disaster Losses Are Enormous l $250B-$500B Disaster Losses Last Decade l Average Annual Hurricane Losses $5.4B l Average Annual Flood Losses $5.2B l Average Annual Earthquake Losses $4.4B l Avg. An. Other Weather Losses ~ $1.6B

5 Point 2 The U.S. Is Becoming More Vulnerable

6 6 U.S. Is Becoming More Vulnerable l 31% 1970 Pop. At Risk to Hurricanes l 50% 1990 Pop. At Risk to Hurricanes l Florida Coastal pop..5M to 9M in 60 Yrs l 1926 Miami Hurricane -- $76 Million l 2001 Miami Hurricane -- $80 Billion l $900 Billion Insured Risk in Florida


8 Point 3 Disaster Costs Have Been Going Up “Natural Disaster Costs in This Country Are Still Sky-Rocketing.” (Dr. Dennis Mileti, Director, Natural Disaster Research and Information Center, University of Colorado, Boulder.)

9 9 Disaster Costs Are Going Up l 441 Presidential Declarations last 10 yrs l Increase of 56% Over Previous Decade l “Each decade, property damage has doubled or tripled in terms of constant dollars.” (Congressional Natural Hazards Caucus, 2001)

10 Point 4 Disaster Losses Projected To Get Even Worse Greenville, Pitt County

11 11 Disaster Losses Projected to Get Worse l SanFran Earthquake Today--$225 Billion l $42B East Coast Hurricane l “Losses of $100 billion from individual events, and perhaps unprecedented losses of life, loom in our future.” (NSTC, Subcommittee on Natural Disaster Reduction, 1996)

12 12 Disaster Losses and Us

13 Point 5 Disasters Impact Differentially

14 14 Some Are More Vulnerable l The Poor l The Marginalized l The Very Young l The Elderly l Single Mothers With Young Children l The Disabled

15 15 Vulnerability is Socially Constructed l Social Sciences vs. Natural Sciences l Social, Economic, Political, and Cultural Factors Create Vulnerability, or l Obstacles to Overcome in Vulnerability Reduction l Situation Is Getting Worse

16 16 Point 6 Past & Current Practices Are Not Effective Enough

17 17 Past & Current Practices Are Not Effective Enough l Natural Events Outpacing Ability to Cope? l We Don’t Know Enough? l Too Expensive? l If Not, Then What?

18 18 Point 7 Disasters Don’t Kill People People Kill People

19 People and Governments Do Not Do The Right Things “…we already know how to reduce the losses from natural disasters, but we just do not do it.” (Congressional Natural Hazards Caucus, 2001)

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22 22 Similar Story in The U.S. l We Build in Floodplains l We Destroy Wetlands l We Try to Control Nature l We Build on Earthquake Faults l We Build on the Coast l We Don’t Zone, Code, Inspect and Enforce Appropriately

23 23 Point 8 Failure To Manage Risk Risk Hazard Exposure Vulnerability Risk Hazard Exposure Vulnerability

24 Point 9 Failure Primarily Governmental Is it right that the lives of human beings can be snuffed out because a government neglected to enforce its own building codes? (Wisner, 2001)

25 25 Failure Primarily Governmental l Public Safety-Governmental Responsibility l Land-Use is Governmental Responsibility l Encouraging Development in Hazard Areas l Building Codes-Government Responsibility l Emer.Mgmt. A Government Responsibility

26 Land Use A Governmental Responsibility “We allow people to build in environmentally sensitive areas susceptible to natural hazards, and then we pay to help them recover when disaster strikes. This is not sound environmental or fiscal policy.” (FEMA, Planning For A Sustainable Future,” 2000)

27 Point 10 Primarily a Political Problem “Although…it is perfectly possible to identify landslides…and reduce the hazard…In the past I have done landslide hazard studies, and suggested remedies, only to have my work ignored because the political will to do something about the problem was not present.” (Alexander 2001, 4)

28 28 Point 10 Primarily a Political Problem l It Won’t Happen Here l Higher Priorities l Desire For Development and Tax Revenues l Opposition Prevails l Why Did It Happen Here?

29 29 Point 11 We Must Create A Culture of Disaster Prevention

30 30 Culture of Disaster Prevention l The Time Is Now l Own Up To Responsibilities l From Culture of Reaction To Prevention l Sustainable Development l Mainstream Emergency Management l Importance of the Media

31 31 Point 12 Emergency Management Needs To Continue To Evolve

32 32 Fundamental Shifts Necessary l Build on Foundation of Risk Mgmt and Tools l Response/Reactive -- Preventive/Proactive l Pivot for Building Disaster Resilience l Articulate/Document Persuasive Case l Mainstream Within Government l Catalysts for Change l Assess & Evaluate Effectiveness l Hire Qualified Personnel

33 33 Point 13 Education Is Key “Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe” (H.G. Wells)

34 34 Role of Colleges & Universities l Generate Knowledge l Transfer Knowledge l Create Partnerships l Foster Change

35 35 Generate Knowledge (Research) l Hazard/Disaster Technology l Risk Assessment l Risk Management l Cost-Effective Mitigation Measures l Communication of Disaster Risk

36 36 Transfer Knowledge l Students l Emergency Mangers l Hazard/Disaster Communities l Key Professions and Disciplines l Policy and Decision-Makers l The Public l K-12

37 37 Create Partnerships (Local, National, International) l Academia (Break Discipline Barriers) l Hazards Community l Emergency Management Community l Interest Groups l Community Stakeholders l The Public l Be Good Community Citizen

38 38 Foster Change l Leader in Disaster Prevention Culture l Develop Courses that Promote Engagement l Lend Credibility to Hazard Reduction Measures l Bring Practitioners and Researchers Together l Find New Ways to Phrase the Message l New Ways to Reach Policy/Decision Makers l Cultivate “Savvy” Media

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