Understand and mitigate the devastating impacts of natural hazards
In a changing world, it is important to understand the natural hazards that originate all around us. A cross-disciplinary effort from the University of Washington, UW College of the Environment, and other university partners is shifting the conversation around these hazards. With state and federal agencies, our scientists and researchers are undaunted in their passion for understanding how and why these hazards occur and how we can take meaningful steps to mitigate. Natural Hazards at the University of Washington is a boundless body of experts working toward a more resilient future for communities across the globe.
The U.S. Geological Survey and university, public and private partners held an event April 10 at the University of Washington to introduce the ShakeAlert earthquake early warning program as a unified, West Coast-wide system. The event also introduced the first pilot uses of the earthquake early warning in Washington and Oregon.
The first Pacific Northwest pilot users of the system are Bothell, Wash.-based RH2 Engineering, which will use the alerts to secure municipal water and sewer systems so these structures remain usable after a major quake.
Black swan events are rare and surprising occurrences that happen without notice and often wreak havoc on society. The metaphor has been used to describe banking collapses, devastating earthquakes and other major surprises in financial, social and natural systems.
A new analysis by the University of Washington and Simon Fraser University is the first to document that black swan events also occur in animal populations and usually manifest as massive, unexpected die-offs.