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New GEM-USAID Project Forecasting and Communicating Earthquake Hazard and Risk (FORCE) launched


Dec 6, 2022

On the heels of the successful completion of the TREQ project partnership this year, GEM and USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) are embarking on a new project called Forecasting and Communicating Earthquake Hazard and Risk or FORCE. The project aims to strengthen the capacities and understanding to manage and respond to future earthquake risk by:

  • introducing future growth or change into national and global exposure models to enable the quantification of future disaster losses, including those associated with climate change;

  • developing communication and dissemination tools to maximize the uptake of disaster risk information in policy-making bodies; and

  • improving the reliability of earthquake hazard and risk assessment, in particular in regions that lack information.

The project has five implementation components aimed at enhancing the reliability and usefulness of the earthquake hazard and risk information produced by GEM and its partners and expanding GEM product applications to multi-hazard risk assessment considering the current and future conditions of the built environment. These components are:

  1. Predicting the evolution of the built environment and population

  2. Forecasting future disaster risk due to earthquakes

  3. Incorporating infrastructure in exposure modeling for risk assessment

  4. Modeling earthquake hazard and risk for small communities

  5. Advancing communication and dissemination of risk information

The 2.5 year-project, will be implemented in collaboration with local scientists and stakeholders in El Salvador, Nepal, and Bhutan (components 1, 2, and 3), as well as small communities in the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans (component 4).

“USAID is excited to support this project which targets some of the most seismically vulnerable communities in the world. The project activities, which are designed to evaluate current and future impacts of earthquakes, will not only benefit the project sites but other nations with similar needs and gaps as well,” Lindsay Davis, Earthquake Disaster Assistance Team Manager-USAID/BHA.

The GEM Foundation has worked with USAID-BHA over the past years on several projects (SSAHARA, CRAVE, TREQ) to develop local and national capacities for earthquake hazard and risk assessment, and to communicate results to the broader community.

An event held from November 21-25 in Cali, Colombia to present the results of the TREQ project risk assessment for the city, marked the start of FORCE project’s commitment to keep and improve the training component for technical and non-technical audiences that GEM started in the TREQ project.

“With the implementation of the FORCE project, USAID-BHA and GEM will be able to continue its work and build from the outcomes of TREQ project, leading a wider community in building local to regional capacity for assessing and reducing risk,” Catalina Yepes, GEM FORCE Project Manager.

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