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Federal News

Dunkirk Fire Department to Gain Mobile Burn Simulator - $360,000 Training Unit the Result of a Federal Grant

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 16:49

New York, NY -- Chautauqua County’s city of Dunkirk will receive a mobile burn unit that will allow the New York fire department and the county’s 42 other departments to conduct live-fire training.  The award, an Assistance to Firefighters Grant, was announced here today by Ms. Dale McShine, Director of Grants for Region II of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which administers the grant program.

With the local share of $40,000, the grant will total $400,000.

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Categories: Federal News

FEMA Provides Federal Funding to Junction Fire in Madera County, California

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 15:26

FEMA Public Affairs (626) 431-3843

OAKLAND, Calif. — The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to assist the state of California combat the Junction Fire currently burning in Madera County.

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Categories: Federal News

A Decade of Water Science: USGS Helps Assess Water Resources in Afghanistan

USGS Newsroom - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 08:37
Summary: For the past decade, scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey have shared their expertise with the Afghanistan Geological Survey (AGS) in efforts to build an inventory of Afghanistan’s water resources

Contact Information:

Ethan Alpern ( Phone: 703-648-4406 ); THomas Mack ( Phone: 603-226-7805 );



For the past decade, scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey have shared their expertise with the Afghanistan Geological Survey (AGS) in efforts to build an inventory of Afghanistan’s water resources. A new fact sheet details how these efforts help the country quantify and monitor its water resource.

“This partnership with the Afghanistan Geological Survey and other international agencies is extremely important for Afghanistan,” said Jack Medlin, USGS regional specialist, Asia and Pacific Region. “There’s a broad consensus that water availability is a global issue, and these collaborative efforts created the data collection networks necessary to help quantify water conditions in the region and manage future water supplies.”

A number of success stories were realized during this decade-long partnership.

In 2004, USGS and AGS initiated plans to rebuild Afghanistan’s capacity for various geologic sciences including hydrology. USGS accomplished the goal with teaching scientists from AGS to apply modern techniques for use of global positioning systems, field hydrology, water-quality sampling, and by developing water-resource databases.

The first efforts of the partnership were to inventory groundwater and surface water resources in Afghanistan’s capital city, Kabul. After inventorying about 150 wells in the first year, data from a subset of wells were monitored over ten years and indicated that water levels were decreasing in the city of Kabul. The water samples collected and analyzed for physical, chemical, and microbiological properties formed the basis of the first joint hydrologic investigation in Kabul.

“Now after 10 years of groundwater-level monitoring, recent analysis of the data shows an improved understanding of groundwater resources and its sustainability in Kabul,” said Thomas Mack, USGS hydrologist. “AGS engineers have established similar groundwater monitoring networks in other major cities across Afghanistan, which are critical for understanding current conditions and water availability at other population and economic centers.”

USGS assisted a World Bank effort to restore approximately 127 historical streamgages in Afghanistan with modern equipment and continues to monitor the country’s hydrologic network.

In the early days of the partnership, the USGS helped establish the Afghanistan Agrometerology Program. By 2014, the program had installed and was operating 102 stations recording precipitation amounts, snow cover, and other meteorological parameters that are crucial for calibrating and validating remote sensing models of Afghanistan.

A focus of the most recent research was to quantify and monitor water resources in the Chakari Basin, a watershed near Kabul and an area that contains considerable copper and other mineral resources.

“Understanding the water and mineral resources of the Chakari Basin is important for Afghanistan’s economic development and for balancing the needs of domestic and industrial water users,” said Michael Chornack, USGS hydrologist.

The hydrogeologic field investigations and water quality sampling conducted by AGS hydrologists provides valuable data needed for assessing water resources in Afghanistan’s mineral resource areas.

The USGS work in Afghanistan has been possible with assistance from other government agencies.

FEMA Launches Spanish-Language App

FEMA Press Releases - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 15:19

WASHINGTON – Today, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) launched a free Spanish-language app with information on what individuals can do before, during and after a disaster to keep their families and communities safe.

FEMA’s Spanish-language app offers a wide array of information for the public and disaster survivors, including preparedness tips, locations of nearby shelters, what to include in an emergency supply kit and a user friendly interface for survivors who may need assistance from FEMA after a disaster.

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Categories: Federal News

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Receives A Nearly $1.5 Million FEMA Grant to Address Volunteer Firefighter Health

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 08/14/2014 - 11:12

DENTON, Texas — The University of Texas (UT) Health Science Center at Houston has received nearly $1.5 million in preparedness funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to address the health of volunteer firefighters.

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Categories: Federal News

Public Invited to Comment on Flood Maps for Unincorporated Areas in Bastrop County, Texas

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 08/14/2014 - 09:24

DENTON, Texas– After working together for months to create new preliminary flood maps, Bastrop County and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials want to hear from the public about preliminary flood maps.

Homeowners, renters and business owners in the unincorporated areas of Bastrop County should look at the preliminary flood maps to better understand where flood risks have been identified. Anyone who has comments or who would like to file an appeal has a 90 day window that runs from August 14, 2014 until November 11, 2014 to submit them.

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Categories: Federal News

Public Invited to Comment on Travis County, Texas Preliminary Flood Maps

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 08/14/2014 - 09:21

DENTON, Texas– After working together for months to create new preliminary flood maps, officials from Travis County, six cities, one village and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) want to hear from the public about the preliminary flood maps.

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Categories: Federal News