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ResilientAmerica Newsletter, May-September 2019


The ResilientAmerica team has had a whirlwind of travel over the past several months! We are finishing up our Texas flood risk mapping activities, completed our flood mitigation community engagement meetings, and held our biannual roundtable meeting.
Table of Contents: 
Check out what some of our Roundtable members have been up to:
Community Engagement Around Flood Mitigation

ResilientAmerica met with diverse stakeholders in four communities—Savannah and Tybee Island, GA; Biloxi, MS; Ellicott City, MD; and Roanoke, Salem, and Vinton, VA—to better understand flood mitigation at the local level and learn about the various ways communities are mitigating floods, how they are funding their mitigation efforts, what their successes have been, and what challenges remain.
(Above) Shawn Gillen, City Manager (far right), and Alan Robertson, Beach Task Force (second from the right), along with a few Tybee Island residents took the ResilientAmerica team on a tour of Tybee Island to learn about its dune restoration project and how floods impact the community.
(Above) ResilientAmerica's Ellicott City stakeholder meetings were held in the beautiful Museum of Howard County History.
Flood Risk in Southeast Texas

ResilientAmerica is partnering with Texas A&M University at Galveston (TAMUG) to develop and test flood risk visualizations and other products to better communicate flood risk and impact in Texas communities. ResilientAmerica met with stakeholders in the Greenspoint neighborhood of Houston to learn about flood risks and impacts in the community, what flood risk products are available, what information decision makers need to better understand and convey the flood risk.
(Above) ResilientAmerica and TAMUG facilitated a mapping exercise with Greenspoint community stakeholders.
The ResilientAmerica Roundtable had a fantastic time at its biannual roundtable meeting in September! This year the roundtable is exploring the topics of wildfires and population displacement due to climate change.

During the meeting, the roundtable heard from experts in these two topic areas including: Dr. Robin Bronen, Alaska Institute for Justice; Dr. Craig Clements, San Jose State University; Supervisor James Gore, Sonoma County; Mr. Andrew Kruczkiewicz, Columbia University; Dr. Max Moritz, University of California at Santa Barbara; Dr. Kristina Peterson, Lowlander Center; Dr. Nicholas Pinter, University of California At Davis; Chief Thom Porter, CAL FIRE; Dr. Stephen Pyne, Arizona State University; and Dr. Scott Stephens, University of California at Berkeley.
(Above, left to right): Monica Schoch-Spana, David Miller, Tamara Dickinson, Max Moritz, Jane Cage, and Linda Langston.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine's Resilient America program conducts consensus studies that dig into key issues that impact community resilience.
Post-Hurricane Supply Chain Adaptability

Funded by FEMA and addressing Section 2.3 of FEMA’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan, this consensus study is analyzing  three different supply chain responses to back-to-back storms - Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria - focusing on the conveyance of food, fuel, water, pharmaceutical supplies, and medical equipment. The final report is expected to be published at the end of the year.
Urban Flooding in the United States

The consensus study committee recently published its report, Framing the Challenge of Urban Flooding in the United States. Some of the major findings from the report include:
  • Existing data are inadequate to provide an accurate monetary estimate of the magnitude of urban flooding.
  • Greater investments are needed to research, understand, and develop interventions to mitigate the social impacts of urban flooding and their disparate effects across populations.
  • A new generation of flood maps and visualizations that integrate predictions and local observations of flood extent and impact is needed to communicate urban flood risk. Improved methods for updating the maps to keep pace with urbanization and climate change are also needed.
Measuring Community Resilience

The consensus study committee recently published its report, Building and Measuring Community Resilience: Actions for Communities and the Gulf Research Program. Some of the findings and recommendations from the report include:
  • There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to resilience practice and measurement given the diversity of communities.
  • Communities are better able to pursue resilience-building efforts when those efforts align with other community initiatives and provide multiple community benefits.
  • Communities should use community participation and engagement at the outset of their resilience building and measurement efforts.
  • Communities should design and measure resilience around multiple dimensions of a community.
Comments? Questions? Contact us at: 

Resilient America Program
500 Fifth Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20001

Copyright © 2019 National Academy of Sciences

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