1st Croatian Conference on Earthquake Engineering: Earthquakes in the Global COVID19 Pandemic

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Hundreds of online participants joined the first Croatian Conference on Earthquake Engineering held from March 22-24, 2021. Organized by the University of Zagreb Faculty of Civil Engineering, the objective of the conference was to commemorate the Zagreb earthquake events in 2020 and to forge a path to a resilient future.


The event gathered national and international researchers, practitioners and public policy makers from Croatia and Europe. GEM’s Vitor Silva gave a presentation on the Potential Impact of Earthquakes in the Global COVID19 Pandemic as keynote for the special session on Urban Renovation Wave Triggered by Earthquake, organized by the City of Zagreb Bureau for Physical Planning.


The presentation focused on the results of a study that Vitor and GEM colleague, Nicole Paul, conducted last year. The research culminated in the development of a pilot COVID-19 and Global Seismic Risk Map.


The map presents COVID-19 statistics released by Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center over the GEM Global Risk Layer depicting earthquake risk from the GEM Global Earthquake Model (2018). The COVID-19 data shows a cumulative number of new cases reported.


The combined map indicates areas where a damaging earthquake could cause increases in COVID-19 cases due to displacement of people from damaged buildings or where health care systems may be further stressed due to human injuries.


Background

The March 22, 2020 magnitude ML5.5 Zagreb earthquake painfully brought to light insufficient earthquake preparedness and hazard resilience of Croatia’s capital. One of the main goals of the virtual conference is to explore the implications of the Zagreb earthquake on Croatia’s future development as well as on other regions of low to moderate seismicity including earthquake resilience of Europe as a whole. For more details about the conference, contact crocee@grad.hr.

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