FEMA and CEE collaborate on week-long conference

More than 100 state and federal agency staff converged on the Georgia Tech Research Institute Conference Center this week for Partners in Mitigation: Teamwork in Action, a five-day workshop focusing on water resources engineering and federal policy implementation
Sponsored by Region IV of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and hosted by the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering,  the workshop will also bring together civil engineers from academia and the private sector to review several areas of practical importance to emergency management, including:

  • new federal regulations and policies for flood hazard mapping and insurance
  • resources for updated hazards analyses and education for general public
  • updates on floodplain management, flood Insurance and federal mitigation grant program

The workshop runs from Jan. 28 through Feb. 1 and is free and open to anyone who has an interest in emergency management and floodplain management policies in Region IV (which includes AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, TN). View the entire agenda (PDF). The series kicked off Monday with an address from FEMA Region IV Deputy Administrator Mary Lynne Miller. CEE School Chair Dr. Reginald DesRoches addressed the group on Tuesday.

“Region IV has among the broadest range of challenges from natural hazards including hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, droughts, ice storms, wildfires, and earthquakes,” said DesRoche, an accomplished civil engineer who has done extensive consultations in his native Haiti since that country suffered a devastating earthquake in 2010.

“Hurricane Sandy was a reminder of the increasing cost of natural disasters, and the critical importance of the work that is performed by FEMA.”

According to Georgia Tech liaison Dr. Jingfeng Wang, several CEE students and faculty are expected to attend the workshop, but the subject matter is bound to attract attendees from across the Institute.

“This conference will be looking at a lot of things, like insurance risk analysis and appeals procedures, so it will be interesting to many different disciplines,” he said.