124 Demonstration of the Drought Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA) Application Toolkit

Monday, 7 January 2019
Hall 4 (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Crystal J. Stiles, Univ. of Nebraska—Lincoln, Lincoln, NE; and D. Bulling, D. J. Bathke, L. M. Pytlik-Zillig, T. Abdel-Monem, T. K. Bernadt, N. A. Wall, and E. Wickham

Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA) is a standardized risk analysis process developed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that can help a community assess its preparedness for a particular threat or hazard. This process is initially carried out through a workshop in which participants are presented with a threat or hazard scenario and then evaluate their agency’s ability to address “core capabilities” identified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Then, capability statements are drafted that represent the resources and actions needed to meet the core capabilities. While the THIRA process has been applied to numerous weather-related hazards, it has not been applied to drought. Through funding from the NOAA Sectoral Applications Research Program (SARP), researchers from the University of Nebraska Public Policy Center, the National Drought Mitigation Center, and the High Plains Regional Climate Center developed a drought scenario for the Platte River Basin in Nebraska that was tested during a THIRA workshop. The project team developed a toolkit to be used by planners, emergency managers, and other decision-makers that can be adapted to any location and outlines the process of developing the scenario, conducting the workshop, and evaluating perceptions of project participants. A demonstration of this online, interactive toolkit would be provided during this climate tools session.
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