hazards

Lawmakers reintroduce bill to protect communities from landslides

IES Soils Glyph

Lawmakers in both the House and Senate reintroduced legislation to improve research and coordination needed to help communities prepare for and respond to landslides. The bill, called the National Landslide Preparedness Act (S. 529/H.R. 1261), would create a unified national program run by USGS to better understand the risks and reduce losses from landslide hazards. It would also officially establish the 3D Elevation Program, managed by USGS in coordination with other federal agencies and nonfederal entities.

Telling your Geoscience Story with Story Maps

Thursday, March 14, 2019

CEU Credits

To earn CEU credits, please complete the associated on-demand GOLI course that was developed from this webinar with a grade of 70% or higher and then submit your application for CEUs. CEUs are awarded from the American Institute of Professional Geologists. To view the full list of on-demand GOLI courses, please browse the GOLI course catalog.

Webinar Materials

Resources to learn more

  • Browse the gallery of Esri StoryMaps
  • Join AGU's Sharing Science Community
    This online community provides members the opportunity to interact with other communication/outreach-interested parties, access to a library of over 100 scholarly manuscripts on the science of science communication, the opportunity to receive information and updates from the program, and more.
  • Learn more about how you can acquire important skills for a career in GIScience or Data Science by browsing the Career Compasses.

About Our Speaker

Joseph Kerski, PhD, GISP is the Education Manager at ESRI. He is a geographer with a focus on the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in education. Joseph was the President of the National Council for Geographic Education and gave an invited TED Talk in 2018 on “The Whys of Where”. He has served as geographer in four major sectors of society, including government (with NOAA, the US Census Bureau, and the US Geological Survey), academia (with Sinte Gleska University, the University of Denver, and as MOOC instructor for Penn State University, Elmhurst College, and eNet Learning), private industry (as Education Manager for Esri), and nonprofit organizations (with roles in the National Council for Geographic Education, the American Association of Geographers, and others). He has worked with AGI for many years on the Global GIS project and Earth Science Week. Joseph has authored over 75 chapters and articles on Geographic Information Systems (GIS), education, earth science, physical and cultural geography, mathematics, fieldwork, teaching and learning, and related topics, and makes frequent presentations at conferences and university campuses. He is active in conducting professional development training for primary, secondary, and university educators. He has authored or co-authored seven books, including Interpreting Our World: 100 Discoveries that Revolutionized Geography, Essentials of the Environment, Spatial Mathematics, Tribal GIS, International Perspectives on Teaching and Learning in Secondary Education, and the GIS Guide to Public Domain Data.

Media Partners

Telling your Geoscience Story with Story Maps

House advances disaster aid funding bill

Hazards fire houses

On January 16, the House passed the Supplemental Appropriations Act (H.R. 268) to provide over $12 billion in emergency funding for communities affected by earthquakes, wildfires, and other natural disasters in 2018. Republicans repeatedly stressed the futility of moving forward any appropriations bill that does not include funding for the president’s border wall. Ultimately, this bill did not make it to a vote in the Senate as a short-term spending bill was agreed upon to re-open the government on January 25.

USGS briefing and report highlight expanded rollout of earthquake early warning system

Cracked road from earthquake

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) held a briefing on October 2 to discuss the ongoing rollout of the ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning System. The briefing was held in conjunction with the release of a new USGS report on the status of and implementation plan for ShakeAlert. Effective implementation of the ShakeAlert System can reduce the impact of earthquakes, save lives, and protect property in earthquake-prone areas.

Geoscience for Community Priorities

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Background:
The geosciences provide valuable knowledge and tools that can be applied to a wide range of community issues, including air and water quality; geologic hazards; the provision of energy, water, and mineral resources; climate and weather impacts; and the construction and maintenance of infrastructure. Geoscientists are commonly keen to see this science put into action, but there are many factors that affect how geoscience is perceived and used in community decision-making. Communities vary tremendously in size, location, culture, history, resources, governance, priorities, and needs. Effective engagement strategies take account of this diversity and employ a range of approaches to support communities and individual decision-makers with science that they can trust, understand, and use.

In this webinar, experts in geoscience communication, education, and engagement discuss a variety of different techniques, media, and principles for more effective communication and collaboration between community leaders, decision makers, and geoscientists. Particular attention is paid to three types of engagement: facilitating community-led solutions by connecting community leaders with geoscientists; incorporating community issues into college-level geoscience curricula; and using online platforms to provide geoscience information, resources, access to expertise, and opportunities for communities facing similar issues to share their experiences.

Our speakers are:

  • Raj Pandya, Ph.D., Director, Thriving Earth Exchange, American Geophysical Union | pdf download icon Slides | YouTube download icon Video
  • Natasha Udu-gama, Ph.D., Senior Specialist, Thriving Earth Exchange, American Geophysical Union | pdf download icon Slides | YouTube download icon Video
  • Sarah Fortner, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Geology & Environmental Science, Wittenberg University | pdf download icon Slides | YouTube download icon Video
  • Cassaundra Rose, Ph.D., Program Manager, Policy and Critical Issues, American Geosciences Institute | pdf download icon Slides | YouTube download icon Video

Thank you to our media partners, the American Geophysical Union, American Institute of Professional Geologists, Association of Women Geoscientists, Council on Undergraduate Research, National Association of Geoscience Teachers, National Association of State Boards of Geology, and the Soil Science Society of America.

Resources to learn more:

Search the Geological Surveys Database for reports and factsheets about geoscience in communities.

Communities and Scientists Working Together

Interactive map of California earthquake hazard zones

The California Geological Survey’s Earthquake Hazards Zone Application (EQ Zapp) is an interactive map that details the risk of earthquakes and related hazards for different areas of the state.

The map is searchable by address, and it maps three main hazard zones:

  • Fault zones
  • Landslide zones
  • Liquefaction zones

The map also displays areas that have not yet been evaluated for liquefaction or landslides.

Click here to access the interactive map.

An Introduction to Landslides and Mass Wasting

This course is designed to be an introduction to the subject of landslides or mass wasting. Landslides or mass wasting occur in both solid bedrock and in poorly-consolidated sediments. Concerning the latter, loose sands, clays and soft shales can prove to be quite problematic. These type of strata are highlighted in our discussions. We will start with a basic review of soil mechanics and strength of materials, as a precursor to our coverage of the topic of landslides.

Adapting Wildfire Management to 21st Century Conditions

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The combination of frequent droughts, changing climate conditions, and longer fire seasons along with urban development expansion into wildland areas has resulted in more difficult conditions for managing wildfires. Over the last several decades, the size of wildfire burn areas has increased substantially and nine of the 10 years with the largest wildfire burn areas have occurred since 2000. Wildfires are causing more frequent and wider-ranging societal impacts, especially as residential communities continue to expand into wildland areas.  Since 2000, there have been twelve wildfires in the United States that have each caused damages exceeding a billion dollars; cumulatively these twelve wildfires have caused a total of $44 billion dollars in damages. As of 2010, 44 million homes in the conterminous United States were located within the wildland-urban-interface, an area where urban development either intermingles with or is in the vicinity of large areas of dense wildland vegetation. These challenging conditions present a unique opportunity to adapt existing wildfire policy and management strategies to present and future wildfire scenarios.

Our speakers are:

This webinar is co-sponsored by the American Association of Geographers, American Institute of Professional Geologists, Geological Society of America, Southern Fire Exchange, Ventura Land Trust

Resources to learn more:

Search the Geological Surveys Database for reports and factsheets about wildfires.

Wildfire Management: Recent Trends and Strategies for Adaptation to Wildfire in the U.S.

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