Being prepared to face disasters: Superstorm Sandy won't be the last

November 30th, 2012
The financial costs of Superstorm Sandy now exceed $60 billion, with the estimate continuing to climb. Given that the U.S. population is growing, with new buildings and infrastructure added to the national inventory every year, the cost of natural and human-caused disasters will only increase if the country isn't better prepared.

Facing inevitable future disasters – but with far greater civic resilience – is the topic of an internet-accessible event held at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C., starting at 9 a.m. Friday, Nov. 30.

USC's Susan Cutter will address the audience at the event, which will include panel discussions with officials from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Energy, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Ralph J. Cicerone, the president of the National Academy of Sciences, will give opening remarks and Miles O'Brien, science correspondent for PBS NewsHour, will moderate the panels.

Cutter, a professor in the department of geography in the College of Arts and Sciences and director of USC's Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute, served as chair of a National Academies committee that released a report in August 2012 titled "Disaster Resilience: A National Imperative." The product of two years of work, the report confronts the topic of how to move the nation from reactive to proactive approaches to disasters, with the ultimate goal of diminishing their burden on society.

Cutter will give an overview of the report at the event, which is the first in a series intended to launch a broad national discussion. To view the webcast, click here.

Provided by University of South Carolina

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