Societal Aspects of Weather

Emergency Management Emergency Management

"Emergency management is the process of preparing for, mitigating, responding to and recovering from an emergency." From Emergency Management Guide for Business and Industry

Section 1. Federal Agencies and Resources

Section 2. State Agencies and Resources

Section 3. University Resources

Section 4. City and County Resources

Section 5. Private Organizations and Resources

Section 6. International Organizations and Resources

Section 1. Federal Agencies and Resources

Bandelier National Monument Cerro Grande Prescribed Fire Investigation Report
On May 4, 2000, Bandelier National Monument personnel ignited a prescribed fire. High winds caused the fire to move out of control and more than 18,000 residents had to be evacuated. By the end of the day on May 10, the fire had burned 18,000 acres, destroying 235 homes and damaging many other structures. This is the interagency Fire Investigation Team's report.

Center of Excellence for Sustainable Development
This site includes an extensive section on disaster planning, including information on how long-term community sustainability can be incorporated into disaster preparedness, mitigation, and recovery. Also available from the Center: The Wingspread Principles: A Community Vision for Sustainability. Besides outlining a disaster recovery approach that promotes quality of life, public health and safety, environmental responsibility, and economic sustainability, the resolution calls on the federal government to allocate 1% of disaster appropriations for sustainable redevelopment technical assistance and to establish a Sustainable Redevelopment Strike Team to be deployed in disaster areas to promote sustainable recovery.

Congressional Natural Hazards Caucus
Each year, Congress appropriates billions of dollars in emergency assistance to states hit hard by earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters. The Caucus hopes to foster an important dialogue on steps the federal, state and local governments can take to lessen the severity of these disasters.

The Emergency Services and Disaster Relief Branch (ESDRB) of the Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS)
ESDRB works in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency in overseeing national efforts to provide emergency mental health services to survivors of Presidentially declared disasters. This web site describes services to individuals and communities affected by disasters, services to state and local mental health administrators, and services to other groups. It includes information on the provision of mental health services following disaster such as "Psychosocial Issues for Older Adults in Disasters" and a "Best Practices" document that describes exemplary disaster crisis counseling programs implemented across the country.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
"Advising on building codes and flood plain management...teaching people how to get through a disaster...helping equip local and state emergency preparedness...coordinating the federal response to a disaster...making disaster assistance available to states, communities, businesses and emergency managers...supporting the nation's fire service...administering the national flood and crime insurance programs...the range of FEMA's activities is broad indeed."
Federally Declared Disasters by Calendar Year
FEMA maintains this list of declared disasters (1992-1998).
Hazard Mitigation Planning
FEMA established this unit in 1998 to provide guidance and resources to States and local communities to promote and support the hazard mitigation planning process.
Multi Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment
As part of its effort to mitigate human and economic loss caused by disasters, FEMA has undertaken a project called the Multi-Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment to clarify and document previous efforts to identify natural and technological hazards, and to assess associated risks. This downloadable report is a reference that summarizes the project's findings.
Project Impact
Project Impact helps communities protect themselves from the devastating effects of natural disasters by taking actions that dramatically reduce disruption and loss. Disaster mitigation projects represent a large portion of the examples now on-line.
FEMA/ESRI Hazards Maps On-Line
FEMA and ESRI offer multi-hazard maps and information via this Web site. Flood hazard maps are available for all areas where FEMA has prepared Q3 flood data. Zipcode entry will produce generalized flood hazard mapping.
Emergency Preparedness Information Project (EPIP) Emergency Gateway
FEMA's African American Emergency Preparedness and Information Project (EPIP) is intended to alert national institutions and organizations in African American communities about the importance of emergency preparedness. The project's Web site is designed to provide minority communities with information about creating disaster resistant families, communities, institutions, businesses and organizations.

National Renewable Energy Lab: Surviving Disaster with Renewable Energy
This site of the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) highlights NREL's role in emergency preparedness and response, disaster mitigation and relief, and sustainable development.

Natural Disaster Reduction--A Plan for the Nation
This report highlights ongoing federal research efforts in the science and technology (S&T) field and identifies new and promising areas where there might be gaps in federal support. The report is intended for internal planning purposes within the federal agencies and as a mechanism to convey to the S&T community the types of research and research priorities being sponsored and considered by the federal agencies.

Natural Disaster Reference Database
This database is maintained by the Earth Sciences Directorate, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Its goals and objectives are to assemble and make available a bibliographic database on research, programs, and results which relate to the use of satellite remote sensing for disaster mitgation.

Natural Hazards Data Resources Directory
A resource for the disaster and hazard management community of practitioners and research scholars. Includes two types of information: 1) data resources organized by natural hazard topic; and 2) lists of hazard-related organizations.

National Interagency Civil-Military Institute
The National Interagency Civil-Military Institute offers free training, information and research services for professionals, civic leaders and public servants on domestic military support capabilities in public safety / disaster preparedness.

Office of Climate, Water, and Weather Services Publications
The National Weather Service Office of Climate, Water, and Weather Services offers several hazards publications on-line including "Saving Lives With an All-Hazard Warning Network," which discusses the potential benefits of a national initiative to improve hazard warnings, and "Thunderstorms . . . Tornadoes . . .Lightning: Nature's Most Violent Storms - A Preparedness Guide," which describes these hazards and suggests actions that can be taken to protect oneself (the second publication is in.pdf format; you will need ACROBAT to read it).

Small Business Administration, Disaster Assistance Division
The SBA's Disaster Loan Program offers financial assistance to those who are trying to rebuild their homes and businesses in the aftermath of a disaster.

State of the Coast
This NOAA site provides a series of essays on coastal issues such as "Population at Risk from Natural Hazards," and "Reducing the Impacts of Coastal Hazards." These essays include overviews of the problem on a national scale, regional analyses, specific case studies, interviews with experts, suggested readings and references, and glossaries.

There are relatively few uniformly-recognized standards dealing with the specifics of hazardous weather response operations. Recognizing this need, the National Weather Service has designed a program to help cities, counties, and towns implement procedures to reduce the potential for disastrous, weather-related, consequences. By participating in "StormReady," local agencies can earn recognition for their jurisdictions by meeting criteria established by the NWS in partnership with federal, state, and local emergency management professionals.

Subcommittee on Natural Disaster Reduction (SNDR)
The SNDR is a Subcommittee of the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources (CENR) of the National Science and Technology Council. The SNDR is made up of representatives from Federal government agencies addressing natural hazards from the points of view of assessment, mitigation, and warning. The goal of the SNDR is to create a sustainable society, resilient to natural hazards. The recently released publication "Effective Disaster Warnings," which provides a report on public and private sector R&D capability to provide early warning of natural or technological hazards that threaten the safety of the Nation, is available at the CENR web site.

USDA, Farm Service Agency Web Site
Administers many programs such as crop insurance and conservation.

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Section 2. State Agencies and Resources

"After a Disaster"
A series of on-line and hard copy publications by the Virginia Cooperative Extension on how to cope with and respond after disasters.

Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN)
EDEN is a collaborative multi-state effort by Extension Services across the country to improve the delivery of services to citizens affected by disasters. This site is designed to provide Extension agents and educators with access to resources on disaster preparedness, recovery, and mitigation that will enhance their short- and long-term programming efforts.

National Emergency Management Association (NEMA)
NEMA is a partnership among State directors of emergency management and others for the establishment and maintenance of an integrated and responsive emergency management structure. This Web site contains information on NEMA's history, publications, committees, membership, upcoming conferences, regional communications, updates on current legislation and other federal issues, and state contact information. NEMA's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) data base, which tracks federally funded Hazard Mitigation Grant Program projects, is also available.

State Emergency Management Agencies - Home Pages
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management maintains this list of state emergency management agency home pages.

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Section 3. University Resources

Disaster Research Center (DRC) at The University of Delaware
DRC engages in a variety of social science research projects on group and organizational preparations for, responses to, and recovery from community-wide emergencies, particularly natural and technological disasters. This site contains lists of DRC's publications, current projects, and staff.

Emergency Management Education Network (EMEN)
EMEN is a Web-based resource that addresses a broad range of issues regarding emergency management, including business continuity and disaster recovery. EMEN provides links to information about what lessons have been learned from previous disasters, what approaches are being taken by various organizations to lessen the impact of disasters, and ideas for the future from academia, professionals, and the public-at-large.

Millersville University Social Research Group Center for the Study of Environmental Hazards and Disasters
The mission of the Social Research Group (SRG) at Millersville University, Millersville, Pennsylvania, is to:
  • study the behavioral and organizational response to disaster
  • study the impact of the media on the response to disaster
  • study and assess emergency preparedness
  • study and assess disaster mitigation activity
  • contribute to the dissemination of knowledge regarding disaster response, preparedness, and mitigation

Natural Hazards Center at the Pennsylvania State University
Natural hazards cut across social, cultural, and economic barriers to profoundly affect life on this planet. The Penn State Natural Hazards Center brings together a diverse group to develop and implement cross-disciplinary studies in hazard evaluation, forecasting, and mitigation.

The Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado
"A national and international clearinghouse for information on natural hazards and human adjustments to hazards and disasters. The Natural Hazards Center carries out its mission in four principal areas: information dissemination, an annual workshop, research, and library services. The center's primary goal is to increase communication among hazard/disaster researchers and those individuals, agencies, and organizations that are actively working to reduce disaster damage and suffering."

University of North Texas Institute of
Emergency Administration and Planning

University of South Carolina Hazards Research Laboratory
A research and graduate training lab focused on the use of geographic information-processing techniques in environmental analysis and management.

University of Wisconsin Disaster Management Center
A unique resource that offers educational programs on the management of situations created by disasters and emergencies in an international context.

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Section 4. City and County Resources

Alachua County Office of Emergency Management

Collier County, Florida Emergency Management Home Page

Larimer County, CO - Emergency Management

Leon County, Florida Emergency Management

Okaloosa County Department of Emergency Services

Seminole County Department of Public Safety

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Section 5. Private Organizations and Resources

The American Red Cross
A humanitarian organization led by volunteers and guided by its Congressional Charter and the Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross Movement, will provide relief to victims of disasters and help people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies.
American Red Cross Florida Capital Area Chapter Community Education
This American Red Cross site from the Florida Capital Area Chapter provides over 20 brochures covering a multiplicity of topics from preparedness for persons with mobility problems, to hurricane preparedness, flood recovery, and the management of pets in disasters.
American Red Cross "What's New?"
In support of FEMA's Project Impact and disaster reduction, the American Red Cross's Mitigation and Community Disaster Preparedness Unit publishes "What's New - Mitigation and Preparedness Activities Across the Country." This newsletter is available in.pdf format; you will need ACROBAT to read these files. Click on the "News" button of the [Florida] Capital Area Chapter of the American Red Cross site to obtain a list of downloadable issues.

Animal Management in Disasters
The purpose of this site is to provide a resource to professional emergency managers and animal care providers who have an interest in improving the care of animals and their owners in disasters, as well as an opportunity to contribute to the development of training material to help the livestock industry mitigate the impact of disasters. is a free service hosted by the Disaster Recovery Information Exchange in Canada. The site offers a job bank and salary survey of interest to members; sample business continuity plans, templates, and guides; back issues of the "Disaster Recovery" E-zine; members' Web pages; information on scheduled training and professional certification; links to other sources of current information; on-line bulletin boards and meeting rooms; and more.

The Disaster Center
This is a commercial site that asks the question: how can we best use the internet to provide information related to disasters? There are many other organizations that fill similar roles. FEMA, Red Cross, and other nonprofit agencies provide important reporting and information distribution functions, which are secondary to their primary agency functions. The Disaster Center's primary function by design is information distribution and collection.

The Disaster Center also maintains a list which is intended to promote the use and development of the internet by public agencies; and to discuss the development of other internet-based systems for collecting and distributing the "disaster message." To subscribe or unsubscribe to this list send an e-mail to: with the word subscribe or the word unsubscribe only in the body of the message.

Disaster Response
The Center of Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance has made the entire text and appendices of "Disaster Response: Principles of Preparation and Coordination," by Erik Aufderheide, available on-line.

The Emergency Information Infrastructure Partnership (EIIP) Virtual Forum
A voluntary association of organizations and individuals seeking to enhance their effectiveness in coping with disasters and emergency situations by exploring the opportunity for sharing information and ideas made possible by electronic technology.

Emergency Management Gold
This site was created by a certified Emergency Manager for emergency managers. David Crews, the author, intends this site to serve other front-line emergency management professionals in all aspects of their work.

The Ericsson Response
The Ericsson Response is a global initiative aimed at developing a better, faster response to human suffering caused by disasters. This highly interactive Web site includes information and case studies, links to other resources, and forums for the development of new options, new ideas to improve response, lessons learned, and new technologies.

Florida Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH)
FLASH is a non-profit, public/private coalition dedicated to promoting and encouraging family and home safety. Its goal is to help Floridians minimize deaths, injuries, suffering, property damage and economic losses caused by hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes or wildfires. It encourages them to build, buy, and use buildings that are safe from disaster, to know the risks that natural hazards present, and to understand ways of reducing these risks.

Global Information Network for the Business Continuity Community
Contingency Planning and Management magazine now offers this Web site, a "global information network for the business continuity community." Users can search the "magazine section" index for a broad range of articles on business continuity subjects; browse a "knowledge base" section for information on products and services available from over 500 suppliers; participate in an on-line forum; receive purchasing advice; take a look at surveys of personnel involved in contingency planning; and participate in surveys.

Milwaukee Area Skywarn Association, Inc.
Promoting severe weather identification, evaluation, and reporting. Includes information on emergency response and disaster.
This Web site is still under construction, but the creators intend to include sections on news, articles and editorials, resources, discussion boards, listserves, and employment.

Natural Hazards Review
The Natural Hazards Review, a publication of the American Society of Civil Engineers and Natural Hazards Center, is "the first cross-disciplinary journal to address all aspects of natural hazards loss and cost reduction."

The Private & Public Businesses, Inc. (PPBI)
PPBI, a not-for-profit corporation, was established to act as a clearinghouse for exchanging information between emergency management, public agencies, and private business through communication, training, and standards setting.

Project Safeside - Keeping you ahead of the storm
Project Safeside is a joint effort of The Weather Channel and the American Red Cross to educate individuals and families about meteorological hazards and to increase their recognition of the importance of preparing for natural disasters. This site includes information about extreme heat, flooding, hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, and the creation of a family disaster plan.

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Section 6. International Organizations and Resources

Benfield Greig Hazard Research Center at University College London Disaster Management Unit
The Disaster Management Unit (DMU) "adds operational expertise in disaster mitigation and preparedness to the Centre's existing scientific expertise. Its work comprises research, information dissemination and education, project management, training and consultancy. Outlines of some of the current projects can be found on this website."

The Canadian Centre for Emergency Preparedness
The Canadian Centre for Emergency Preparedness provides its quarterly news magazine, "CCEP NEWS", online.

The December 1999 issue of Currents is devoted to "Humanitarianism in a Changing World." Articles on topics such as "NGOs in Nicaragua after Hurricane Mitch: Gaps and Opportunities in Disaster Mitigation and Preparedness," and "Full Economic Impact of Natural Disasters" are included.

Disaster Mitigation for Sustainable Livelihoods Programme (DiMP)
DiMP promotes disaster mitigation as a strategy to achieve sustainable development. It encourages the integration of disaster mitigation with development programs, particularly those targeted at economically vulnerable communities. This site provides a description, history, background information, and details about current areas of interest of the program; more information about Periperi, a network of organizations and institutions committed to risk reduction in southern Africa; a list of DiMP publications; and links to related regional and international organizations.

Disasters: Preparedness and Mitigation in the Americas
Disasters: Preparedness and Mitigation in the Americas is the quarterly newsletter of Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)'s Emergency Preparedness Program. It provides news about disaster preparedness activities in the countries of the Americas, and thus aims to encourage dialogue and the sharing of ideas among governments and agencies. It also reviews publications, features upcoming meetings and offers articles of current interest that have been added to the Selected Bibliography.

ECLAC/CDCC Caribbean Sustainable Development
This site of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) contains links to information about natural and environmental disasters in the Caribbean.

Emergency Management Australia
EMA is the federal agency responsible for reducing the impact of natural and human-caused disasters on the Australian community. It is also the lead agency for coordinating federal disaster response. Its updated web site provides information about the agency's activities and emergency management in general.

Emergency Preparedness Information eXchange (EPIX)
EPIX's purpose is "to facilitate the exchange of ideas and information among Canadian and international public and private sector organizations about the prevention of, preparation for, recovery from and/or mitigation of risk associated with natural and socio-technological disasters."

The Global Disaster Information Network (GDIN)
GDIN's purpose is to make needed information for conducting effective disaster relief operations available via the Internet.

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRCRCS) World Disaster Report
The IFRCRCS recently released its World Disaster Report 2000, focusing on public health in disasters.

International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters
This journal is concerned with the social and behavioral aspects of relatively sudden collective stress situations typically referred to as disasters or mass emergencies. All aspects of the life history of such events, both actual and threatened, are examined including mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery activities.

International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR)
The International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR) officially ended in 1999. Its successor, the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR), has two goals: disaster prevention and helping communities reduce the risk of longer-term social and economic disruption in the face of a natural hazard. This site provides background information about the ISDR; a list of ISDR and ISDR-related events; on-line versions of the ISDR newsletter; descriptions of various ISDR initiatives; and numerous reports, tools, brochures, and U.N. documents. Its newsletter for Latin America and the Caribbean can be found at ISDR Informs.

Natural Hazards Society
The International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, more commonly known as the Natural Hazards Society (NHS), lists its major objectives as follows:
  • to promote research in all aspects of natural hazards
  • to assist in the distribution of preparedness and emergency-response plans for countries around the world
  • to assist in the formation and implementation of education programs on hazards prevention and mitigation

Organization of American States publications
The Organization of American States offers the following three on-line publications:

Regional Disaster Information Center, Latin America and the Caribbean
The Center's mission is "to promote the development of a prevention culture in the Latin American and Caribbean countries, through the compilation and dissemination of disaster-related information, and the promotion of co-operative efforts to improve risk management in the Region." This Web site, which is in English and Spanish, provides on-line access to over 12,000 bibliographic references, publication and distribution of materials on disaster-related topics, and technical advice and training for the establishment of disaster information units.

Turning Point Group Inc.
This Web site is a forum for dialogue and exchange of ideas among emergency practitioners from across Canada and the world.

UNEP GRID Centres Network
The Global Resource Information Database (GRID) is a worldwide network of 15 environmental data centres managed by UNEP's Division of Early Warning and Assessment (DEWA).

UNICEF Emergencies
UNICEF, the only UN agency dedicated to the care and protection of children, has revamped its Web site pertaining to emergencies. The new site makes UNICEF field situation reports, thematic reviews, appeals, and references easily available.

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