This is an annually renewed project that supports NIST's Lead Agency coordination of National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) research and implementation activities, as well as management of the Engineering Laboratory (EL) Earthquake Risk Reduction in Buildings and Infrastructure R&D Program that are performed by the EL Earthquake Engineering Group. NIST is designated by the U.S. Congress as the statutory Lead Agency for NEHRP, which has four participating agencies: the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), NIST, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).
Objective - This annually renewed project provides services in support of NIST's statutory Lead Agency role of coordinating National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) research and implementation activities and provides management support for the Engineering Laboratory (EL) Earthquake Risk Reduction in Buildings and Infrastructure Program.
What is the new technical idea? This project is not a traditional research effort. Rather, it supports National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) coordination, management, and leadership. The U.S. Congress requires four agencies to perform coordinated earthquake-related research and implementation activities under the umbrella of NEHRP: the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), NIST, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the U.S. Geological Survey. The 2004 reauthorization of NEHRP (Public Law, PL, 108-360) directed NIST to perform as Program Lead Agency.
To fulfill this statutory responsibility and provide leadership for its Earthquake Risk Reduction in Buildings and Infrastructure Program, NIST established the NEHRP Office. Specific statutory EL NEHRP responsibilities include supporting the NEHRP Interagency Coordinating Committee (ICC), the NEHRP senior leadership body; supporting the Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction (ACEHR), which provides the ICC with expert assessments on earthquake engineering trends and developments and on NEHRP effectiveness, management, and coordination; developing and updating NEHRP strategic and management plans; maintaining the NEHRP web site as an outreach vehicle for the program, and submitting ICC-approved annual reports to Congress on NEHRP activities.
A small in-house staff consisting of a Director, a Deputy Director, a Management/Program Analyst, and an Administrative Assistant performs these functions. In addition to the in-house staff, the NEHRP Office retains contractor administrative assistance for web site and editorial functions.
What is the research plan? NEHRP is a research and implementation partnership of FEMA, NIST, NSF, and USGS. The NEHRP Strategic Plan outlines the global NEHRP vision, goals, and objectives. The Plan has three Strategic Goals – (A) improve understanding of earthquake processes and impacts; (B) develop cost-effective measures to reduce earthquake impacts in individuals, the built environment, and society-at-large; and, (C) improve the earthquake resilience of communities nationwide. Each of these goals has four or six major objectives, many of which require significant interactions among the NEHRP agencies.
The Strategic Plan also outlines nine strategic priorities that should receive increased emphasis if resources are available to support them:
A NIST-funded 2011 National Research Council (NRC) report provided a long-range research and implementation roadmap for NEHRP that endorsed the NEHRP Strategic Plan. Both the Plan and the NRC roadmap emphasize national earthquake resilience.
Major planned FY 2016 EL NEHRP activities include:
Funding limitations dictate that the NEHRP Office will focus less in the future on broader program planning activities (e.g., NEHRP-wide workshops), and focus more narrowly on activities that directly support statutory requirements and ACEHR and ICC activities.
Start Date:October 1, 2012
Lead Organizational Unit:el
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