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GEM Foundation and El Salvador's MARN Conclude Successful OpenQuake Engine and Tools Training


Dec 14, 2023

Nov 9, 2023

On November 9th, 2023, the GEM Foundation, in collaboration with El Salvador's Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARN), conducted a comprehensive seismic hazard workshop at FEPADE in El Salvador. Part of the USAID - Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance-supported Forecasting and Communicating Earthquake Hazard and Risk (FORCE) Project, the 1-day training workshop focused on Probabilistic Seismic Hazard Assessment (PSHA), Risk Analysis, and utilising the OpenQuake (OQ) Engine.

The training workshop introduced classical PSHA and important concepts used to develop PSHA input models. Participants got an overview of PSHA modelling techniques, with sessions on seismic source and ground motion characterisation, and demonstrating their implementation in the OQ Engine. Hands-on sessions involved practical exercises, including a demonstration using the QGIS plugin for PSHA calculations related to the CCARA model and visualising the results. The session also included basic concepts on scenario impact assessment and preview of scenario response risk profiles for El Salvador.

Moreover, throughout the week of November 6-11, technical workshops with GEM and MARN engineers and scientists covered multiple facets of hazard and risk assessment. Hazard sessions included practical demonstrations utilising the Modelling Building Toolkit (MBTK) to update El Salvador's national seismic hazard model. These comprehensive workshops showcased the application of new or updated modules of the MBTK within the context of enhancing seismic hazard assessment strategies.

Risk sessions focused on additional training for the MARN team, covering scenario impact and event-based methodologies for risk assessment. A couple of technical sessions were dedicated to the review of the national exposure model, the use of local vulnerability functions and techniques for validation of the country’s risk model inputs.

This initiative contributes to building local expertise in seismic hazard and risk assessment, enhancing El Salvador's earthquake resilience. The workshop's success owes much to the dedicated local partners' invaluable contributions. The event marks a crucial step forward in strengthening El Salvador's preparedness and response capabilities in seismic risk management.

To learn more about the FORCE Project, visit:

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