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FEMA Mitigation Advisers Offer Guidance to Flood Survivors in Charleston, Darlington, Dorchester, Greenwood, Horry and Richland Counties

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 11/27/2015 - 10:15

COLUMBIA, S.C. – As South Carolinians rebuild and repair after the recent historic floods, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and local home improvement stores have teamed up to provide free information, tips and literature on making homes stronger and safer.

FEMA mitigation specialists will be on hand to answer questions and offer home improvement tips to prevent and lessen damage from future disasters. Most of the information is geared towards do-it-yourself work and general contractors.

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Deadline Approaching to Register for FEMA Assistance

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 11/26/2015 - 06:36

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Just a little over a week remains for survivors of the Oct. 1-23 storms and flooding in South Carolina to register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and submit loan applications to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The deadline to register for federal disaster assistance is Friday, Dec. 4.

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Texas Receives Federal Disaster Declaration; Texans Urged to Apply for Disaster Aid

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 11/25/2015 - 14:43

Texas Receives Federal Disaster Declaration; Texans Urged to Apply for Disaster Aid

DENTON, Texas – Texans affected by the recent severe storms should register now with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

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Federal aid programs for the state of Texas

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 11/25/2015 - 13:58

Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Obama's disaster declaration issued for the State of Texas.

Assistance for Affected Individuals and Families Can Include as Required:

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President declares major disaster for Texas

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 11/25/2015 - 13:54

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) today announced that federal disaster assistance has been made available to the state of Texas to supplement state, tribal and local recovery efforts in the area affected by severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding during the period of October 22-31, 2015.

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Survivors Urged to Stay in Touch with FEMA

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 11/24/2015 - 13:46

SACRAMENTO, Calif.The deadline for Calaveras and Lake county wildfire survivors to register with FEMA has passed, but various forms of disaster assistance remain available. Survivors who registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency are urged to stay in touch with the agency.

“Even though the DRCs are closed, FEMA remains in California to work with the state and local governments to provide assistance with recovery,” said Tim Scranton, Federal Coordinating Official for this disaster. “FEMA will remain as long as needed.”

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FEMA Reminds Survivors: One Call Gets You In

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 11/24/2015 - 11:39

COLUMBIA, S.C. Survivors of South Carolina flooding Oct. 1-23 can get help with one phone call.

Call the Federal Emergency Management Agency helpline at 800-621-3362 for information about many federal disaster assistance-related matters. Lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Survivors who use TTY may call 800-462-7585; those who use 711/VRS can call 800-621-3362. They can also visit www.disasterassistance.gov.

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Sumter Disaster Recovery Center Reopens at New Location on Tuesday

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 11/24/2015 - 02:00

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The disaster recovery center formerly at the Sumter County Civic Center will reopen at the following location at 8 am. Tuesday, Nov. 24:

  • Central Carolina Technical College building located at 853 Broad St. in Sumter

The center will be open six days a week Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. until further notice. The center will be closed Thanksgiving Day.                                                                                                                

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Last day to register with FEMA and apply for SBA disaster loans

FEMA Press Releases - Mon, 11/23/2015 - 20:03

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Today is the last day that wildfire survivors in Calaveras and Lake counties can register to receive housing or other needs assistance grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and apply for disaster recovery loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

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Include Your Pets in Disaster Preparedness Planning

FEMA Press Releases - Mon, 11/23/2015 - 19:59

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Many pets were left behind to fend for themselves during the wildfires in California’s Calaveras and Lake counties resulting in serious injuries, death or disappearance.

This occurred because the fire came so fast many survivors had no time to save the animals.

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Know Before You Go: Travel Safety Tips for Your Thanksgiving Holiday

FEMA Press Releases - Mon, 11/23/2015 - 11:16

CHICAGO –The Thanksgiving week ahead is one typically filled with travel, a busy schedule and potentially bad weather.

“Don’t let this hectic time of year sidetrack you from safety on the road,” said FEMA Region V Administrator Andrew Velasquez III. “Take some time now to talk to your family about how to handle a travel emergency, and stockpile necessary supplies in your car in case you become stranded.”

Remember to take these simple steps to help ensure safe travel for you and your family:

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FEMA Grants to Help Washington Communities Recover Costs from August Windstorm

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 11/20/2015 - 15:04

CAMP MURRAY, Wash. – As Washington responders pick up the pieces from the latest round of severe weather, specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Washington State Emergency Management Division (EMD) are working with local and tribal officials to help communities recover from last summer’s severe wind event.

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FEMA Mitigation Advisers Offer Guidance to Flood Survivors in Kershaw, Richland Counties

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 11/20/2015 - 02:21

COLUMBIA, S.C. – As South Carolinians rebuild and repair after the recent historic floods, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and local home improvement stores have teamed up to provide free information, tips and literature on making homes stronger and safer.

FEMA mitigation specialists will be on hand in Kershaw and Richland counties to answer questions and offer home improvement tips to prevent and lessen damage from future disasters. Most of the information is geared towards do-it-yourself work and general contractors.

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FEMA Mitigation Advisers Offer Guidance to Flood Survivors in Florence, Georgetown Counties

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 11/20/2015 - 02:13

COLUMBIA, S.C. – As South Carolinians rebuild and repair after the recent historic floods, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and local home improvement stores have teamed up to provide free information, tips and literature on making homes stronger and safer.

FEMA mitigation specialists will be on hand in Florence and Georgetown counties to answer questions and offer home improvement tips to prevent and lessen damage from future disasters. Most of the information is geared towards do-it-yourself work and general contractors.

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FEMA Mitigation Advisers Offer Guidance to Flood Survivors in Dorchester County

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 11/20/2015 - 02:09

COLUMBIA, S.C. – As South Carolinians rebuild and repair after the recent historic floods, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and local home improvement stores have teamed up to provide free information, tips and literature on making homes stronger and safer.

FEMA mitigation specialists will be on hand in Dorchester County to answer questions and offer home improvement tips to prevent and lessen damage from future disasters. Most of the information is geared towards do-it-yourself work and general contractors.

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FEMA’s Pacific Northwest Region wishes you #SafeTravels for the holidays

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 11/19/2015 - 15:58

SEATTLE, Wash. – With so many people on the move for the holidays, FEMA’s regional office in the Pacific Northwest is running two week-long social media campaigns to encourage holiday travelers to stay safe Nov. 22 – 28, and Dec. 20 – 26. The campaign has tips for families, pet owners, smartphone users, and people traveling domestically by car and plane, and internationally.  

Here are three tips from the campaign:

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Help Remains Available After Disaster Recovery Centers Close in Andrews and Conway

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 11/19/2015 - 13:33

COLUMBIA, S.C. - Two disaster recovery centers will close Saturday, Nov. 21 at 7 p.m. due to a lack of visitors:

  • Potato Bed Ferry Community Center at 531 Big Dam Swamp Drive in Andrews

  • Horry County Government and Justice Center at 1301 Second Ave. in Conway

Applicants in Andrews and Conway may still visit other recovery centers to ask disaster assistance questions. They can locate their closest center by visiting asd.fema.gov/inter/locator/home.htm.

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Piping Plovers Losing Breeding Habitat to Wetland Drainage

USGS Newsroom - Thu, 11/19/2015 - 11:30
Summary: Piping plovers, a federally threatened species of shorebirds, are likely losing wetland breeding habitat in the Great Plains as a result of wetland drainage, climate change or both, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study

Contact Information:

Marisa Lubeck ( Phone: 303-202-4765 );



Piping plovers, a federally threatened species of shorebirds, are likely losing wetland breeding habitat in the Great Plains as a result of wetland drainage, climate change or both, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study.

“Our findings suggest that if drainage continues, there will be continued declines in the amount of breeding habitat for piping plovers at wetlands in the Great Plains,” said Lisa McCauley, who led the study as a USGS postdoctoral student and currently works at The Nature Conservancy. “Managers can use information from our study to better restore and conserve valuable wetland ecosystems for the protection of this species.”

The USGS scientists analyzed piping plover survey data from 1979 to 2011 for 32 wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region of North Dakota. They found that consolidation drainage, or the drainage of smaller wetlands into another wetland—typically for agricultural purposes—results in fewer and fuller wetlands with less shoreline nesting space for piping plovers.

According to the study, the probability of plover presence was 99.6 percent greater for wetlands located in undrained watersheds when compared to wetlands where 10 percent of the watershed was drained.

Piping plovers breed on wetland or reservoir shorelines and river sandbars in the northern Great Plains of the United States and Canada. Climate varies across this area, so when river or reservoir shorelines are flooded, unflooded prairie wetlands can provide habitat and vice versa. Consolidation drainage contributes to habitat loss for plovers by making wetlands fuller and shorelines smaller.

Like consolidation drainage, the fate of plover habitat is also tied to potential changes in climate. If precipitation increases in this region, the amount of wetland habitat for plovers could continue to decline. 

“High and stable water levels resulting from consolidation drainage threaten biodiversity, wildlife habitat and flood storage in the northern Great Plains,” said Michael Anteau, a USGS scientist and team leader for the project. “This work on a federally listed species provides managers with a more complete view of ecosystem services affected by consolidation drainage.”

For more information on USGS ecosystems research in the Prairie Pothole Region, please visit the USGS Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center website.

 

US Topo Maps Reach Milestone

USGS Newsroom - Thu, 11/19/2015 - 09:30
Summary: With the release of new US Topo maps for Illinois and South Dakota, the USGS has completed the second, three-year cycle of revising and updating electronic US Topo quadrangles. This means that since late 2009, the USGS has published nearly every map in the conterminous U.S., twice Updated Illinois and South Dakota maps completes second National Map revision cycle

Contact Information:

Mark Newell, APR ( Phone: 573-308-3850 ); Larry Moore ( Phone: 303-202-4019 );



With the release of new US Topo maps for Illinois and South Dakota, the USGS has completed the second, three-year cycle of revising and updating electronic US Topo quadrangles. This means that since late 2009, the USGS has published nearly every map in the conterminous U.S., twice.

“The USGS and NGP are proud of our history and legacy of topographic mapping in the US,” said Mike Tischler, director of the USGS National Geospatial Program. “This latest cycle of US Topo production is a testament to the professionalism and capability of our staff and keeps that legacy alive. We've revised more than 110,000 maps in the last six years to include higher quality data across the country, and have been able to deliver those maps in an easy to use format to suit the diverse needs of our users. While reaching the end of the second-cycle is an important achievement, we look forward to the next cycle of US Topo production, and investigating emerging technologies to better serve the needs of the country.”

In the past 12 months, the production staff of the NGP has updated, revised and loaded 18,767 US Topo quads covering 18 states. That equates to the assembly, inspection and loading of nearly 75 maps per working day. Additionally, the staff created more than 635 new 1:24,000 scale maps for Alaska, as part of the Alaska Mapping Initiative. All of the new US Topo maps are digital and offered for free download, as the USGS no longer prints topographic maps using traditional printing technologies.

Other improvements to the state maps in the second-cycle include the inclusion of National Scenic Trails, “crowdsourced” trail data from the International Mountain Bike Association, increased parcel land data (PLSS), and most recently, trail data from the U.S. Forest Service.

The complete new map sets for Illinois and South Dakota join Maine, Alabama, Arizona, Nebraska, Nevada, Missouri, California, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Wyoming, and Florida  as revised states for fiscal year 2015.

All of these new US Topo maps replace the first edition US Topo maps and are available for no-cost file download from The National Map, the USGS Map Locator & Downloader website , and several other USGS applications.

The first three-year production cycle ended in September 2012, and the second cycle ended in September 2015.

To compare change over time, scans of legacy USGS topo maps, some dating back to the late 1800s, can be downloaded from the USGS Historical Topographic Map Collection.

Find more information on US Topo maps online.

This graphic represents the planned US Topo map production schedule for the next three- year revision cycle. The US Topo project repackages data from national GIS (geographic Information system) databases as traditional maps, primarily for the benefit of non-GIS users. Unlike traditional topographic maps, US Topo maps are mass-produced from secondary sources, on a programmed refresh cycle, using the best available data at the time of production. (high resolution image 1.96 MB) As a result of the inclusion of selected National Scenic Trail data on the US Topo maps, 13 state map series now feature National Scenic Trails, and more will be added in the coming months. These trails have been established by Congress to provide for maximum outdoor recreation potential and for the conservation and enjoyment of nationally significant scenic, historic, natural, and cultural qualities of the area through which such trails may pass.

There are 11 National Scenic Trails:
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail
  • Continental Divide National Scenic Trail
  • North Country National Scenic Trail
  • Ice Age National Scenic Trail
  • Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
  • Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail
  • Florida National Scenic Trail
  • Arizona National Scenic Trail
  • New England National Scenic Trail
  • Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail
(high resolution image 63.6 KB)

Keep Your Important Documents Safe from a Disaster

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 11/18/2015 - 19:20

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Fumbling through files for important papers can be frustrating. But when an emergency strikes, trying to gather up all those documents can be downright frightening.

There is a way around all the late-minute hassle, but it will take some time and a way to organize and contain them so that you can grab and go when a disaster strikes. And, with predictions of more severe weather and flooding this winter due to El Nino, now is a good time to organize your papers.

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