Risk Informed Funding

All Data Is Not Created Equally

Many factors are taken into consideration when prioritizing mitigation activities. From a risk data perspective this includes evaluating hazards and vulnerabilities; analyzing historic occurrences and Presidential Major Disaster Declarations; determining social vulnerability; and evaluating the geographical extent of a hazard. At a State level it can often times prove challenging to utilize data as a driving factor in prioritizing projects. The level of the data can have unintended consequences. Local data presents inconsistencies when comparing one community to another. Statewide data can lack the specificity to comprehend the impacts to a community. These issues must be taken into consideration if FEMA begins to consider utilizing risk data in order to make funding decisions. Developing nationwide data will be too broad, but utilizing State data can create disparities as some State's will be data rich and have the resources to develop superior data, whereas others will not have this capability. Currently, emphasis is placed on flood risk data, with specific regard to the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), thus creating an exclusionary environment where non-flood hazards are often times prioritized lower. FEMA should expand the HMA programs to be more inclusive of all hazards by diluting the dependence on flood risk data. Today's changing climate is a driving factor in the record flooding we are experiencing outside of the SFHA and increases in wildfires. The FMA program should be utilized to support all flood mitigation activities.



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Idea No. 2327