Society For Risk Analysis Annual Meeting 2013

Session Schedule & Abstracts

* Disclaimer: All presentations represent the views of the authors, and not the organizations that support their research. Please apply the standard disclaimer that any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations in abstracts, posters, and presentations at the meeting are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of any other organization or agency. Meeting attendees and authors should be aware that this disclaimer is intended to apply to all abstracts contained in this document. Authors who wish to emphasize this disclaimer should do so in their presentation or poster. In an effort to make the abstracts as concise as possible and easy for meeting participants to read, the abstracts have been formatted such that they exclude references to papers, affiliations, and/or funding sources. Authors who wish to provide attendees with this information should do so in their presentation or poster.

Common abbreviations

Building More Resilient Infrastructure

Room: Johnson B   10:30 AM- 12:00 PM

Chair(s): Eva Andrijcic

W2-K.1  10:30  Mapping societal functions, flows and dependencies to strengthen community resilience – results from an initial study. Hassel H, Johansson J*; Lund University

Abstract: Communities are becoming increasingly dependent on critical societal functions and flows, such as energy supply, transportation of goods and people, school and health care. Dependencies between these functions and flows are also increasing. These trends imply that disruptions in the functions and flows may quickly lead to large societal consequences through domino effects which may be very difficult to understand and foresee. Understanding the functions, flows and their dependencies is key in order to increase the resilience of the communities. Gaining such an understanding requires systematic mapping of relevant information and methods for analysis. This paper presents a new method for mapping societal functions, flows, and their dependencies. Such a method is very useful as part of a comprehensive community-level risk and vulnerability assessments. The mapping is conducted by eliciting information from actors, both public and private, that represent critical societal functions. The mapping method is divided into three main parts: 1) System-level mapping, including e.g. mapping values/objectives for the system and what societal functions are contributing to their achievement. 2) Function-specific mapping, including e.g. mapping values/objectives for a specific function and what activities that must be performed to achieve them, as well as what flows are dependent on the activities and what the actor is dependent on to be able to perform the activities), 3) System-level aggregation, i.e. aggregating and synthesizing the information from step 2 into a holistic picture of a community or a region. The mapping method has been applied in an initial study of public and private actors in a specific geographic region (two different municipalities) in Sweden. From the initial results a complex picture of functions, flows and dependencies emerge which stresses the importance of these types of methods to guide public and private policy makers in governing risk and vulnerability.

W2-K.2  10:50  Power outage analysis for Hurricane Isaac. Tonn GL*, Guikema SD; Johns Hopkins University

Abstract: In August 2012, Hurricane Isaac, a Category 2 hurricane, caused extensive power outages in Louisiana. The storm brought high winds, storm surge and flooding to Louisiana, and power outages were extensive and prolonged. Hourly power outage data for the state of Louisiana was collected during the storm and analyzed. This analysis included correlation of hourly power outage figures by zip code with wind, rainfall, and storm surge. Results were analyzed to understand how drivers for power outages differed geographically within the state. Hurricane Isaac differed from many hurricanes due to the significant storm surge and flooding. This analysis provided insight on how rainfall and storm surge, along with wind, contribute to risk of power outages in hurricanes. The results of this analysis can be used to better understand hurricane power outage risk and better prepare for future storms. It will also be used to improve the accuracy and robustness of a power outage forecasting model developed at Johns Hopkins University.

W2-K.3  11:10  Managing risk through resilience and recovery in seaport operations. Salazar DE*, Chatterjee S; University of Southern California

Abstract: Port operations are vital for the welfare of the country, supporting food security and economic activity. Arguably, natural hazards constitute the main threat to port operations, although intentional attacks can inflict significant damage too. Depending on the importance of each port and its exposure to risk, different strategies for risk management are possible. However, in some cases and due to the criticality of certain locations, resilience should be enhanced to secure at least some minimal level of operation capacity in the aftermath of a disaster. Although some frameworks for allocation of resources in critical infrastructure protection have been published, they pay more attention to prevention than resilience and recovery. In this research we focus on what to do in the aftermath of a disaster. We present a methodology to assess resilience in port operations using statistical and simulation modeling methods for risk and operability assessment and decision analysis tools for resource allocation.

W2-K.4  11:30  Building a More Resilient Water Sector by Assessing and Responding to Potential Vulnerabilities. Baranowski C*; US Environmental Protection Agency

Abstract: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Water Security Division (WSD) has developed resources to improve the security and resilience of the nation’s drinking water and wastewater infrastructure. These resources support utilities in assessing vulnerabilities to terrorist attacks, natural disasters and extreme weather events. Several tools are freely available to be used by water utilities building resilience to potential threats and seeking to continue to meet their public health and environmental missions. The Vulnerability Self-Assessment Tool (VSAT) was developed to support the utilities meet the requirements of the 2002 Bioterrorism Response Act. Community drinking water systems serving a population greater than 3,300 were required to perform a vulnerability assessment and update their Emergency Response Plans. VSAT guides utilities through a framework to determine the risk from both security threats and natural hazards and assess the consequences of these threats in terms of public health and economic impacts to the utility and community. Utilities are also faced with preparing for hazards associated with long-term changes in climate, including droughts and sea-level rise. The Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) provides relevant data in the form of climate scenarios describing a range of changes in temperature and precipitation. The risk assessment process encourages utilities to think systematically about the impact of changing conditions and to identify cost-effective strategies for adaptation. Finally, the Water Health and Economic Analysis Tool (WHEAT) provides a means to estimate the consequences for the utility and surrounding community when critical assets are lost, system becomes contaminated or hazardous gas is released. Each of these scenarios can be analyzed and data drawn from reports directly inform assessments.

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