Congressional Hazards Caucus Alliance Homepage


Hazards Caucus Alliance Briefing

Earthquakes: Mitigation Through Effective Design and Getting the Public Involved

Tuesday, September 20, 2005
2325 Rayburn House Office Building, 3:00 - 4:00 pm

Earthquakes occur suddenly and without warning, so it is important to prepare the public and the built environment in advance to minimize the hazard. About 75 million Americans in 39 states face a significant risk of an earthquake. This briefing will show how the public can get involved in monitoring earthquake shaking, how to design and build more earthquake-resistant structures, how to protect our lifelines (communication lines, oil and gas pipelines, water and sewage systems and others) and how to respond after an earthquake occurs.

Speakers and their presentations

David Wald, Seismologist, U.S. Geological Survey, Golden, Colorado
Rapid Earthquake Information: Citizen Science and New Tools for Emergency Response (MS PowerPoint document; 8.6 MB)

Clifford J. Roblee, Geotechnical Engineer, Ph.D., P.E.,Executive Director, Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation Consortium, Inc., Davis California
How to design and build more earthquake-resistant and cost-effective structures:
MS PowerPoint document without videos; 7.82 MB | Zip file containing MS Powerpoint document and videos, 63 MB |

Stuart Nishenko, Seismologist, Pacific Gas and Electric Power Company, San Francisco, California
Most cost effective approaches to monitor seismic response in buildings and lifelines and how to protect vital infrastructure
(MS PowerPoint document; 3.1 MB)

Russ Paulsen, Emergency Manager, American Red Cross, Washington DC
How to prepare for and respond to an earthquake [Cancelled due to illness]

Stuart Nishenko, PG&E. Photograph: Brad Keelor

The briefing was sponsored by the following members of the Hazards Caucus Coalition:

American Geological Institute
Earthquake Engineering Research Institute
Seismological Society of America

Information about the speakers

Dr. David Wald is a seismologist with the US Geological Survey in Golden Colorado and an Adjunct Associate Professor at the Colorado School of Mines. He received his PhD in geophysics from the California Institute of Technology and received the Southern California Emergency Services Association's Diamond Award for outstanding service and support to the Field of Emergency Management in 2000 while he was working at the USGS in Pasadena California.

Dr. Cliff Roblee was recently selected as Executive Director of the NEES Consortium, Incorporated (NCI) where he will lead the coordination of NEES research and its resources. Before coming to NEES, Cliff worked for over 12 years with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) applying earthquake research to the management and performance of Caltrans projects. He received his Ph.D. in geotechnical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. Stu Nishenko is a Senior Seismologist in the Geosciences Department of the Pacific Gas and Electric Company in San Francisco, CA. He co-manages PG&E's Earthquake Risk Management Program and the UC/Berkeley PEER Center Lifelines program on behalf of the California Energy Commission. He has previously worked at FEMA and the USGS. He received his Ph.D. in geophysics from Columbia University, Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory.

Russ Paulsen is the Deputy to the Executive Vice President of the American Red Cross with responsibilities for flagship disaster response and preparedness services, network of chapters, international relief and development, quality assurance, and fundraising. Before coming to Washington DC in 2003, he worked extensively in emergency management in the San Francisco Bay area. He holds a masters degree in political science from the University of California at Berkeley.

The Caucus Alliance invites your participation in the briefing and in future Caucus events. For more information, contact Linda Rowan at 703-379-2480 ext. 228;

Contributed by Katie Ackerly and Linda Rowan, AGI Government Affairs Staff

Posted: September 14, 2005; Revised: September 21, 2005

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