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"Resilience begins with leadership, appropriate planning both in terms of action-plans but also in terms of proper community planning and development visions." Dr. Larry Weber, University of Iowa 6 The Landscape of Resilience Policy-- Resilience from the Top Down INTRODUCTION The key elements of resilience include strong governance at all levels, including the making of consistent and complementary local, state, and federal policies. As previously discussed, communities are not under a single authority, but must function under a mix of policies and practices implemented and enforced by different levels of government. Furthermore, policies that make the nation more resilient are important in every aspect of American life and economy, and not just during times of stress or trauma. A key role of policies designed to improve national resilience is to take the long-term view of community resilience and to help avoid short-term expediencies that can diminish resilience. Policies to improve community and national resilience may be designed and promulgated specifically to address issues of resilience, or they may be policies designed for another reason that acknowledge the importance and process of building resilience. In some cases, policies designed to accomplish one positive goal may unintentionally cause deterioration of community resilience. Therefore, policies and programs at all levels of government require examination to assess their impact on the long-term resilience of communities and the nation. Increasing national resilience through specific policy measures involves addressing the multiple aspects of resilience that have been discussed in this report. For example, as Chapter 2 emphasizes, policy mechanisms play a role in risk management through provision of data and information to evaluate potential hazards, although, as Chapter 2 outlined, information alone does not ensure resilience. Likewise, progress toward improved resilience is driven by the need and value propositions outlined in Chapter 3, and likely monitored using the indicators and tools described in Chapter 4 of this report. At the national level, policies that enhance national resilience are not simply disaster reduction policies. Because the scope of resilience is sometimes not fully appreciated, 159
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160 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE some who contemplate national resilience policy think first of the Stafford Act and its role in disaster response and recovery. Although the Stafford Act (discussed further below) does provide for certain responsibilities and actions in the face of a disaster, national resilience, as has been demonstrated throughout this report, transcends the immediate impact and disaster response and, therefore, grows from a broader set of policies. Many of the policies that affect national resilience are not related to specific hazards or disaster events at all, including some policies that may apply only to specific subsystems of a community (Longstaff et al., 2010), and others that may have effects on essential community services such as education and health care (see Chapter 5). With this background, this chapter is developed from the idea that improvement of national resilience relies on collections of coordinated and integrated policies at multiple levels rather than a single comprehensive government policy. The subsequent sections provide context for considering policy options across the full range of stakeholders and authorities that constitute the landscape of resilience, and describes several current practices at federal, state, and local levels that support resilience, as well as policies that unintentionally undermine resilience. Identification of specific roles and responsibilities of government in building resilience flows naturally from discussion in Chapter 5 of the complementary roles and actions that communities can embrace as part of a systemic national effort to increase resilience. The interdependency and interaction of community initiatives and government policy are critical for increasing resilience (see Chapter 7 for the way in which bottom-up and top-down approaches may be linked). EXISTING FEDERAL POLICIES THAT STRENGTHEN RESILIENCE Federal policies are intended to provide a set of nationally uniform laws or practices to address national needs that transcend the conditions or needs of individual states or cities. Federal policies address issues that have national scope and importance, even if the issues and consequences are local. These policies exist at the level of the Executive Branch--in both the Office of the President and in the Cabinet Departments as well as in independent federal agencies--and in laws enacted by the Legislative Branch. An outline of the most critical of the policies that the committee determined would provide support to strengthen resilience is briefly reviewed below. Federal Executive Branch Policies Supporting Resilience U.S. national leaders continue to seek broad policies for strengthening the nation against both terrorist acts and natural disasters. Certain Executive Branch policies, for example, are promulgated by the President through Executive Orders or Directives that guide the actions of federal agencies. These Presidential Directives and Executive Orders have the force of law. Directives
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 161 may take different forms, but most recent Presidential Directives affecting national resilience have been either Homeland Security Presidential Directives (HSPD) or Presidential Policy Directives (PPD). A Presidential Policy Directive (PPD-8) from 2011 entitled "National Preparedness" begins by saying: This directive is aimed at strengthening the security and resilience of the United States through systematic preparation for the threats that pose the greatest risk to the security of the Nation, including acts of terrorism, cyberattacks, pandemics, and catastrophic natural disasters. (White House and DHS, 2011) The Directive calls for the development of a National Preparedness System to guide activities that will enable the nation to achieve the goal of strengthening its security and resilience; for a comprehensive campaign to build and sustain national preparedness; and for an annual National Preparedness Report to measure progress in meeting the goal. Importantly, the President calls on DHS to embrace systematic preparation against all types of threats, including catastrophic natural disasters. Preparedness is not synonymous with resilience, but they are related. According to PPD-8, "The term `resilience' refers to the ability to adapt to changing conditions and withstand and rapidly recover from disruption due to emergencies" (White House and DHS, 2011). This definition is in keeping with the definition of resilience established by the committee during the course of this study (see Chapter 1). The Directive also recognizes resilience as a characteristic of an individual, community, or nation and that resilience is enhanced through improved preparedness as noted below: The Secretary of Homeland Security shall coordinate a comprehensive campaign to build and sustain national preparedness, including public outreach and community-based and private-sector programs to enhance national resilience, the provision of Federal financial assistance, preparedness efforts by the Federal Government, and national research and development efforts. (White House and DHS, 2011) As Box 6.1 shows, an entire series of HSPDs has been issued since September 11, 2001. Although many of these directives are heavily focused on terrorist threats, the preparation and response of communities to terrorist threats contain many of the same elements as preparation for natural hazards. Thus, significant and deliberate overlap exists in the application of HSPDs to both human-made and natural threats. PPD-8 is one that can be broadly applied in this way.
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162 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE Importantly, PPD-8 recognizes that our national response to a wide range of events, from the 2009 H1N1 pandemic to the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, has been strengthened by leveraging the expertise and resources that exist in our communities. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is directed to coordinate a "comprehensive campaign," informed by the long-term requirements for national resilience, to reach the goals of the Directive. Although the President assigns the Secretary of DHS to coordinate this comprehensive campaign under PPD-8, the directive indicates that DHS is not expected to conduct all of the work itself, but to coordinate the work of others. The Committee supports the role of DHS in serving as coordinator of these broad efforts to enhance national resilience under PPD-8 (see additional discussion in Chapter 7). BOX 6.1 Homeland Security Presidential Directives Relevant to National Resilience · HSPD-1: Organization and Operation of the Homeland Security Council. Ensures coordination of all homeland security-related activities among executive departments and agencies and promotes the effective development and implementation of all homeland security policies (October 2001). · HSPD-3: Homeland Security Advisory System. Establishes a comprehensive and effective means to disseminate information regarding the risk of terrorist acts to federal, state, and local authorities and to the American people (March 2002). This system was replaced by the Terrorism Advisory System in 2011. · HSPD-5: Management of Domestic Incidents. Enhances the ability of the United States to manage domestic incidents by establishing a single, comprehensive national incident management system (February 2003). · HSPD-7: Critical Infrastructure Identification, Prioritization, and Protection. Establishes a national policy for federal departments and agencies to identify and prioritize U.S. critical infrastructure and key resources and to protect them from terrorist attacks (December 2003). · HSPD-8 Annex 1: National Planning. Rescinded by PPD-8 (below): National Preparedness, except for paragraph 44. Individual plans developed under HSPD-8 and Annex I remain in effect until rescinded or otherwise replaced (December 2003). · Presidential Policy Directive/PPD-8: National Preparedness. Aimed at strengthening the security and resilience of the United States through systematic preparation for the threats that pose the greatest risk to the security of the nation, including acts of terrorism, cyber attacks, pandemics, and catastrophic natural disasters (March 2011). · HSPD-20: National Continuity Policy. Establishes a comprehensive national policy on the continuity of federal government structures and operations and a single national continuity coordinator responsible for coordinating the development and implementation of federal continuity policies (May 2007).
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 163 · HSPD-20 Annex A: Continuity Planning. Assigns executive departments and agencies to a category commensurate with their COOP/COG/ECG responsibilities during an emergency (September 2008). · HSPD-21: Public Health and Medical Preparedness. Establishes a national strategy that will enable a level of public health and medical preparedness sufficient to address a range of possible disasters (October 2007). · HSPD-23: National Cyber Security Initiative (January 2008). Source: DHS, http://www.dhs.gov/xabout/laws/editorial_0607.shtm. Notes: PPD-8 (http://www.dhs.gov/xabout/laws/gc_1215444247124.shtm) replaces HSPD-8 (2003) and HSPD-8 Annex I (2007). Relevance of all HSPDs in this list to national resilience has been evaluated by the Committee for this study. The language of PPD-8 makes clear that American communities and the private sector play central roles in enhancing national resilience and, therefore, that DHS's coordination of federal efforts also involves effective engagement of those critical stakeholders. Significantly, DHS is also called upon to coordinate federal financial assistance, the preparedness efforts by other federal agencies, and national research and development efforts. The issuance of PPD-8 was a significant advance in increasing and improving the federal role in national resilience, and its goals were amplified by the report of the Homeland Security Advisory Council's Community Resilience Task Force (CRTF, 2011). That report, released in June 2011, builds on the Quadrennial Homeland Security Review Report1 and contains a set of recommendations intended to define the role of DHS in advancing national resilience through the mechanism of PPD-8: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) clearly has an important role to play in building national resilience, but at its core, the resilience charge is about enabling and mobilizing American communities. The CRTF acknowledges that many relevant activities are already underway, particularly in fostering development of preparedness capabilities, but observes that those activities are rarely linked explicitly to resilience. (CRTF, 2011) 1 The Quadrennial Homeland Security Review Report (http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/qhsr_report.pdf) contains five Homeland Security missions. Mission 5 is Resilience to Natural Disasters, which outlines the traditional elements of hazard mitigation, enhanced preparedness, effective emergency response, and rapid recovery. These issues are also discussed in the DHS Bottom-Up Review Report (http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/bur_bottom_up_review.pdf) released in July, 2010.
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164 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE The recommendations contained in the CRTF report (Box 6.2) represent a strong and clear starting point for federal involvement in building national resilience. The recommendations are directed specifically to DHS and call for clarification of responsibilities, building knowledge and public awareness to enhance individual and societal resilience, and providing long-term targets to support urban planning and the built environment. BOX 6.2 Recommendations of the Homeland Security Advisory Council, Community Resilience Task Force (CRTF) 2011 CRTF Recommendations that apply across the full range of Community Resilience activities include: CRTF Recommendation 1.1: Build a Shared Understanding of the Shared Responsibility. DHS should take the lead in working with key stakeholder groups to develop and share models for resilience--illustrations of resilience in operational settings--within the context of each group. The purpose is to motivate stakeholders to learn from each other and to do what they can to enhance resilience without waiting for external intervention. CRTF Recommendation 1.2: Build a Coherent and Synergistic Campaign to Strengthen and Sustain National Resilience. DHS should align policies, programs, and investments to motivate and operationalize resilience, and should use its leadership charge from PPD-8 to motivate similar actions across the federal government and throughout the Nation. CRTF Recommendations 1.3: Organize for Effective Execution. DHS should establish a National Resilience Office and charge it with building the resilience foundation envisioned by the QHSR. CRTF Recommendation 1.4: Build the Knowledge and Talent Base for Resilience. DHS should implement a research program to build the intellectual underpinnings for resilience training and education programs to be delivered throughout the Nation. CRTF Recommendations related to enhancing individual and societal resilience include: CRTF Recommendation 2.1: Update ready.gov. DHS should establish and execute a plan for periodic review and update of the content and presentation of information on ready.gov; messages should be linked explicitly to resilience outcomes. CRTF Recommendation 2.2: Build Public Awareness. DHS should develop and implement a comprehensive and coherent suite of communications strategies in support of a national campaign to increase public awareness and motivate individual citizens to build societal resilience.
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 165 CRTF Recommendation 2.3: Motivate and Enable Action. DHS should adapt and implement proven incentive and award programs to motivate individual and community engagement and action, and further develop mechanisms to facilitate and enable engagement. CRTF Recommendations targeting urban planning for the built environment include: CRTF Recommendation 3.1: Leverage Existing Federal Assets. DHS, in conjunction with the General Services Administration and local officials, should develop a Resilient Community Initiative (RCI) that leverages federal assets and programs to enable community resilience. CRTF Recommendation 3.2: Align Federal Grant Programs to Promote and Enable Resilience Initiatives. DHS should review and align all grant programs related to infrastructure or capacity building, and should support development of synchronized strategic master plans for improvement of operational resilience throughout the Nation. CRTF Recommendation 3.3: Enable Community-Based Resilient Infrastructure Initiatives. DHS should transform its critical infrastructure planning approach to more effectively enable and facilitate communities in their efforts to build and sustain resilient critical infrastructures. CRTF Recommendation 3.4: Enable Community-Based Resilience Assessment. DHS should coordinate development of a community-based, all- hazards American Resilience Assessment (ARA) methodology and toolkit. Source: Homeland Security Advisory Council, Community Resilience Task Force (http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/hsac-community-resilience-task-force-recommendations- 072011.pdf), June 2011. In addition to the CRTF recommendations, the National Preparedness Goal developed by DHS in response to PPD-8 provides a statement of national preparedness that includes preemptive actions designed to mitigate or reduce the impact of both terrorism and natural hazards in order to develop a more resilient nation (Box 6.3). The National Preparedness Goal deals with preparedness across jurisdictions and at a national scale. The formulation of the National Preparedness Goal, the operational implementation of its many aspects, and the administration of several community funding programs, primarily through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA),2 place DHS in a strong position to provide leadership in the interagency efforts required to build national resilience. 2 http://www.dhs.gov/ynews/releases/20110217-dhs-fy12-grant-guidance.shtm.
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166 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE BOX 6.3 DHS National Preparedness Goal (excerpt) "We describe our security and resilience posture through the core capabilities . . . that are necessary to deal with great risks, and we will use an integrated, layered, and all-of-Nation approach as our foundation. We define success as: A secure and resilient Nation with the capabilities required across the whole community to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from the threats and hazards that pose the greatest risk. Using the core capabilities, we achieve the National Preparedness Goal by: Preventing, avoiding, or stopping a threatened or an actual act of terrorism. Protecting our citizens, residents, visitors, and assets against the greatest threats and hazards in a manner that allows our interests, aspirations, and way of life to thrive. Mitigating the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of future disasters. Responding quickly to save lives, protect property and the environment, and meet basic human needs in the aftermath of a catastrophic incident. Recovering through a focus on the timely restoration, strengthening, and revitalization of infrastructure, housing, and a sustainable economy, as well as the health, social, cultural, historic, and environmental fabric of communities affected by a catastrophic incident. ...These are not targets for any single jurisdiction or agency; achieving these targets will require a national effort involving the whole community." Source: Department of Homeland Security, National Preparedness Goal, 1st Edition, September, 2011, http://www.fema.gov/pdf/prepared/npg.pdf. The conduct of federal activities in partnership with state, local, and private partners may also be the goal of other Presidential directives. For example, the interaction of federal agencies with the private sector to advance the goal of improving resilience has been demonstrated in the area of critical infrastructure. Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7 (HSPD-7) gives the Secretary of Homeland Security oversight responsibility for protecting 18 critical infrastructure sectors, and gives selected agencies and the Environmental Protection Agency the ability to direct national infrastructure protection for some sectors (Box 6.4). These responsibilities require close coordination with state and local government, as well as the private sector, and may provide a model for the federalstatelocalprivate partnerships required to develop broader strategies for building resilience in U.S. communities.
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 167 BOX 6. 4 Roles and Responsibilities of Sector-Specific Federal Agencies in Critical Infrastructure Protection "18. Recognizing that each infrastructure sector possesses its own unique characteristics and operating models, there are designated Sector-Specific Agencies, including a. Department of Agriculture--agriculture, food (meat, poultry, egg products); b. Health and Human Services--public health, health care, and food (other than meat, poultry, egg products); c. Environmental Protection Agency--drinking water and water treatment systems; d. Department of Energy--energy, including the production refining, storage, and distribution of oil and gas, and electric power except for commercial nuclear power facilities; e. Department of the Treasury--banking and finance; f. Department of the Interior--national monuments and icons; and g. Department of Defense--defense industrial base. 19. In accordance with guidance provided by the Secretary, Sector-Specific Agencies shall: a. collaborate with all relevant Federal departments and agencies, State and local governments, and the private sector, including with key persons and entities in their infrastructure sector; b. conduct or facilitate vulnerability assessments of the sector; and c. encourage risk management strategies to protect against and mitigate the effects of attacks against critical infrastructure and key resources." Source: Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7: Critical Infrastructure Identification, Prioritization, and Protection, December 17, 2003. Other types of federal policies may also strongly affect resilience in very broad ways. For example, evidence is growing that changing global climate is increasing the nation's exposure to natural hazards through more frequent and severe storms, as well as more extensive droughts and increased vulnerability of our coastal regions through sea-level rise (NRC, 2012). Thus, one type of long-term federal policy goal to improve U.S. national resilience might include an energy policy that addresses carbon emissions and dependence on imported energy resources. Addressing carbon emissions could help mitigate climate change which otherwise may result in an increase in frequency and intensity of weather-related hazards and could help support a national effort to
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168 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE become less import-dependent for our energy needs (NRC, 2010). Although such policies may not be recognized immediately as affecting resilience to natural disasters, they are examples of the far-reaching implications of policy decisions that may have impact on national resilience. Finally, strategic investment of federal funds in local communities-- even within the structure of existing statutes and programs--may provide a strong impetus to develop more resilient communities. Communities realize that stronger infrastructure and institutions would make their population less vulnerable to disasters, but they generally lack the resources or political will to make capital-intense short-term investments even if they believe that those investments will reap long-term benefits. In the future, predisaster funding may serve as a critical tool in building national resilience. The practice of federal funding of post-disaster recovery within local communities should be strategically complemented with predisaster funding of the highest-priority resilience elements within a community, such as enforcement of building codes, land-use and development planning, and disaster-resistant health care services. Existing programs such as those within FEMA3 could be strengthened to place a greater emphasis on resilience. Careful analysis and consideration of a strategic approach to federal funding of resilience are important in efforts to reduce the impact (and cost) of disasters. Coordination of Executive Branch Federal Agencies In addition to the Executive Branch policies issued through Presidential Directives and Executive Orders, agency policies may be initiated by individual federal agencies through the rulemaking process, and may include such things as management practices for federal lands or other resources, or rules and policies that outline roles and responsibilities of various federal agencies in managing federal assets, including those directing or supporting the activities that foster community resilience. A key challenge for the federal government is how to maintain motivation and accountability among all of the federal agencies in the pursuit of defined, common goals toward increasing resilience. Each federal agency has a specific mission, has a budget that is largely separate from the budgets of other agencies, and is accountable to the President and to Congress, rather than to other agencies. A large number of federal agencies play key roles in mitigation, preparedness and response aspects of building resilience. The ways in which federal agencies are coordinated to address resilience issues on individual, community, state, and national levels are currently not always clear, and the process of coordination should be defined around a common vision of resilience in order to leverage the effectiveness of each agency's efforts and investments. DHS, by virtue of its mission and because it contains the major response 3 www.fema.gov/government/grant/hma/index.shtm.
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 169 agencies, FEMA and the Coast Guard, houses much of the federal responsibility and accountability for fostering national resilience and has a leading role during response to incidents. However, DHS partners with other agencies that provide research, information, and response capabilities essential to national resilience. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the U.S. Forest Service, and the the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers play crucial roles in providing scientific understanding and real-time assessments of weather-related issues, fires, earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, and other natural hazards, relevant both for short- and long-term monitoring and planning before disasters occur and during actual events. The Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation, the National Resources Conservation Service, and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission manage or provide oversight for levees and other structures and therefore play a critical role in flood reduction and management, water supply, and energy generation. The Department of Energy has key responsibilities for the energy infrastructure--coordinating such aspects as energy infrastructure security and energy restoration, and emergency preparedness and response for critical energy infrastructure. In addition to attention to natural science and infrastructure components, resilience relies on the health and welfare of the citizenry, and so federal agencies such as the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Education, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and other federal agencies play key roles in helping to build the total resilience of U.S. communities. A partial list of the numerous federal departments and agencies engaged in some aspect of building community and national resilience is shown in Table 6.1 along with some of their ongoing resilience-related activities and initiatives. Of course it is difficult to coordinate these numerous and diverse federal efforts, but failure to adequately harmonize the work of these agencies reduces the effectiveness of the overall federal effort to increase national resilience. On the other hand, improved coordination of federal resilience programs in communities provides significant opportunities for leveraging federal funding and ensuring that agencies are not working at cross purposes. Many agencies have demonstrated successful federalstatelocal private cooperation arising from internal agency vision or goals, For example, USGS and NOAA have worked with nonfederal partners to transfer research results to their stakeholders, and have worked successfully to help communities to assess and mitigate their earthquake and coastal hazards. These successful examples have not happened by accident, but result from explicit policies within each agency. The vision statement from the NOAA Administrator in the agency's 5-year plan says: NOAA's mission is central to many of today's greatest challenges. The state of the economy. Jobs. Climate Change. Severe weather. Ocean acidification. Natural and human-
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186 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE Government, while acknowledging the primary role of local, State and Tribal governments, is prepared to vigorously support local, State and Tribal governments in a large-scale disaster or catastrophic incident.18 However, many communities do not address, in a comprehensive manner, the numerous and complex issues that produce resilience until after a severe event occurs. The best time to develop resilience in a community is while the community is being planned and built or reconstructed after a disaster, and that is when the state and federal agencies may have somewhat limited roles. Therefore, it is critical that individuals and community leaders understand their roles and responsibilities relative to state and federal responsibilities, and that they consciously seek to improve the resilience of their community through their decisions and governing processes. An example of building community resilience with specific local policies is through the implementation of resource planning policies by states and regional authorities that recognize threats from natural hazards also contribute to community resilience. For example, the State of Massachusetts recently adopted a climate change plan (Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 2011) to help avoid the consequences of anticipated changes resulting from climate change, and the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (2011) issued a set of recommendations targeted at helping the San Francisco Bay area prepare for changes resulting from climate change and sea- level rise. Maryland has recognized the vulnerability of its coastal zones, particularly in light of the potential changes in sea level and climate, and has developed adaptation strategies for their coastal areas (Maryland Commission on Climate Change, 2008). Efforts such as these contribute to community and national resilience by identifying hazards and threats before a disaster occurs, allowing local administrations to adjust their development plans to protect their citizens. UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES: POLICIES AND PRACTICES THAT NEGATIVELY IMPACT RESILIENCE Much of this chapter has focused on policies and programs that provide the framework for governance, responsibilities, and support of community resilience from the top down. But community resilience may also be affected by policies that are seemingly unrelated to resilience. Policies and practices 18 http://www.fema.gov/national-disaster-recovery-framework, p. 9.
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 187 promulgated to address a wide variety of other national problems may have the unintended consequence of reducing resilience. Furthermore, in some cases, failure to enact a policy that would increase resilience results in a deterioration of resilience. In other words, the absence of a specific beneficial policy is, in itself, a policy. We present here a few examples of policies where unintended consequences have effectively reduced community resilience. Agricultural policies provide one example of unintended consequences that reduce resilience. In this example, shifts in agricultural practice in the United States in response to farm policies designed to improve field drainage and productivity have unintentionally but significantly exacerbated flooding in the Midwest. Westward expansion of farming during the 19th century motivated farmers to improve the drainage in flat or low-lying farm fields to make them more productive. Improvement in field drainage was accomplished by the installation of drain tiles or perforated pipes just under the surface of the field to remove excess water. The effect of this accelerated drainage during the spring months of each year was to move water quickly from the fields to the streams and rivers, which exacerbated--and still exacerbates--flooding along many stream and rivers in the Midwest. The contribution of field drainage to flooding was made even worse after the implementation of new agricultural policies following the Great Depression. As part of his suite of New Deal policies, President Franklin D. Roosevelt believed that true prosperity would not return to the nation until farming was prosperous. Roosevelt's Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938 made federal price support mandatory for corn, cotton, and wheat and established permissible supports for many other crops and farm products.19 The result of this policy was a fundamental shift in farming practice to row crops (mainly corn and soybeans) replacing traditional sod farming (perennial vegetation such as hay and densely sown small grains including oats, wheat, barley, triticale, and rye undersown with pasture grasses and legumes) as demonstrated for Iowa in Figure 6.1 (Jackson, 2002; see also Mutel, 2010). 19 Agricultural Adjustment Act, P.L. 75-430, United States Code, Title 7, Chapter 35, http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi- bin/usc.cgi?ACTION=BROWSE&TITLE=7USCC35&PDFS=YES.
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188 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE FIGURE 6.1 Shift in farming practice in Iowa to row crops from earlier focus on sod crops around 1938 as a result of the Agricultural Adjustment Act. Source: Adapted from Jackson (2002). For more than 60 years (1870 to the 1930s) Iowa farmers had maintained about 50 percent sod crop, but with passage of the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938 row crops began to dominate, with dramatic implications for flood resilience (Jackson, 2002). The traditional sod crops had dense root masses that absorbed rainfall without runoff and released it back to the atmosphere via transpiration and through underground flow into both shallow and deep aquifers (Jackson and Keeney, 2010). Because the crops were perennial, after harvest the root mass remained and was not tilled up, thus retaining and improving top soil. Knox (2006) describes the agricultural conversion of prairie and forest in the upper Mississippi Basin as the most important environmental change that influenced fluvial (river and stream) activity in this region in the past 10,000 years. Even without impacts of climate change, farm practice (responding in part to policy) has significantly increased the flood potential in the Midwest. The overall effect of facilitating the drainage of millions of acres of farm fields through underground drains, combined with the shift from sod crops to row crops and the encroachment of many communities into the floodplain, was to reduce the resilience of cities and towns along Midwestern rivers by increasing the likelihood and intensity of flooding. To address this problem, Jackson and Keeney (2010) summarize a variety of proposed novel mitigation strategies including crop rotation, strip-cropping practice, crop mixing, as well as setting
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 189 aside small percentages of row-crop land for perennial "buffer strips" along streams. This example, like many others, contains many variables and many forces, and cannot be distilled into a simple choice between flooding and soggy fields or subsidies that encourage unsustainable farming practices, but it serves to demonstrate that unintended consequences of well-intentioned national agricultural policies may ultimately reduce local resilience. Forest management policy provides a second example of unintended consequences of policies or practices. A century of aggressive suppression of wildland fires combined with recent broad and extended periods of drought, have substantially altered many of the nation's forests and have resulted in devastating wildfires at the wildlandurban interface in many locations across the United States. These fires are difficult to control, threaten adjacent urban areas, and are expensive to fight (Cohen, 2008). Corrective policies that emphasize fuel management are often underfunded or infeasible. In their review, USDA ecologists Donovan and Brown (2007) recommend a different approach to wildfire management that focuses on encouraging managers to balance short-term wildfire damages against the long-term consequences of fire exclusion. The approach deemphasizes fire suppression. Recent changes in the management of wildland fires recognize the effects of past policies on forested communities and these new policies increase the resilience of those communities and accommodate the sustainability of ecosystems (National Wildfire Coordinating Group, 2009). Likewise, government policies for coastal zone management have traditionally been intended to balance economic development along the coasts with preservation of coastal habitat and environment while recognizing the risks of development along the coast.20 Now more than 50 percent of the U.S. population lives within 50 miles of a coastline and this proportion is expected to increase in the future.21 Economic development, including residential, commercial, recreational, and industrial development in the coastal zone has greatly increased the exposure to storm surge, coastal erosion, and sea-level rise. Federal policy for coastal zones has been to encourage and support coastal states in the proper development and management of their coastal areas, but some states have placed short-term economic development above long-term safety and community resilience. Perhaps the classic example of unintended consequences of well- intentioned historical policies is the effects of Mississippi River flood management on the City of New Orleans and the Mississippi River delta communities. This series of historical decisions and engineering efforts has been thoroughly documented in several publications (Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority of Louisiana, 2012). Many decades of efforts to levee and channel the Mississippi River to reduce flooding and facilitate navigation along 20 Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended through P.L. 109-58 and the Energy Policy Act of 2005, http://coastalmanagement.noaa.gov/czm/czm_act.html. 21 NOAA, http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/population.html.
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190 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE the course of the river as well as the construction of large dams on the main stem of the Missouri River combined with construction of channels for transportation of oil and gas exploration have starved the Mississippi River delta of sediment and have resulted in increased vulnerability to tropical storms and hurricanes in the Mississippi delta region. The normal natural processes of sedimentation and delta growth were halted and the subsidence of the delta edifice was not counteracted by the deposition of new sediments across the delta. The result is a subsiding and shrinking delta with reduced capacity to mitigate storm surge. These effects have severely degraded the resilience of the delta and the human settlements in the region, including New Orleans. These historic policies have made the entire Mississippi delta region less resilient. In addition to unintended consequences of individual policies, the lack of communication and coordination among federal agencies may have real consequences for communities or victims of a disaster. Sometimes an individual policy may be beneficial, but when multiple federal agencies independently apply mutually unknown policies to the same geographic area or structure, those policies may be contradictory and may inhibit recovery or slow the enhancement of resilience. For example, if one agency bases the distribution of funds on the value of a property on a floodplain at the same time that a policy of a different agency is changing the value of that property through acquisition or demolition, the property owner may be caught in a quandary and may be excluded from a funding mechanism through no action or fault of his or her own. The application of federal policies either before or after disasters needs to be informed by the goals of the community and by the knowledge of other policies that are being applied by other agencies. This coordinated application of policies will only be achieved if communication and coordination among federal agencies is achieved, and if agencies are aware of the needs and priorities of the affected community or individual. An unintended consequence of certain security policies adopted after the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center attack is the difficulty of some local governments and the private sector in gaining access to certain information necessary to secure privately owned infrastructure against various hazards and to develop plans to deal with emergency events. A report on National Dam Safety to FEMA by the University of Maryland identified the restrictions placed on release of information on dam integrity and potential downstream inundation as significant impediments to disaster planning and preparedness (Water Policy Collaborative, 2011). A 2012 Report by the National Research Council on dam and levee safety and community resilience similarly concluded that Those subject to the direct or indirect impacts of dam or levee failure are also those with the opportunity to reduce the consequences of failure through physical and social changes in the community, community growth planning, safe housing construction, financial planning (including bonds and
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 191 insurance), and development of the capacity to adapt to change. (NRC, 2012, p. 107) As pointed out by Flynn and Burke (2011), investment and operational decisions by corporations that own critical infrastructure may be made without full security awareness because information that has been classified by the Department of Homeland Security is sometimes not available to the corporate executives making the decisions. Because an increase in community resilience requires coordination and cooperation among all key players within the community, including the private-sector owners of infrastructure, it is vitally important that communities be aware of prescribed rules and methods of sharing restricted information in a secure way among all partners, including the vital private-sector partners, as detailed in Executive Orders 12829,22 12958,23 and 13292.24 Some types of data may be sensitive, but giving local partners the opportunity to work with state and federal stakeholders on equal footing is important to build long-term resilience. Finally, even some policies that seem unrelated to community or national resilience may unintentionally and negatively affect resilience. A recent example of this is the Budget Control Act of 2011. The President signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 into law (P.L. 112-25) on August 2, 2011. The purpose of that legislation is primarily to increase the U.S. debt limit, establish caps on the annual appropriations process over the next 10 years, and to create a Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction that is instructed to develop a bill to reduce the federal deficit over the 10-year period. One provision of this new law that affects U.S. national resilience is an amendment to Section 251 of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985. That amendment provides for disaster relief appropriations each fiscal year based on "the average funding provided for disaster relief over the previous 10 years, excluding the highest and lowest years." In this bill, "the term `disaster relief' means activities carried out pursuant to a determination under section 102(2) of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5122(2))." As discussed elsewhere in this report, developing national resilience encompasses more elements than disaster recovery alone. Building a resilient community requires thoughtful and strategic long-term investments in multiple aspects of the physical and social fabric of communities that contribute to resilience. Of course, disaster recovery is an integral part of that process because the ability of communities to recover after a disaster, and the way that they recover, is closely tied to becoming more resilient to subsequent trauma. Therefore, the federal commitment to assist communities in a timely fashion is central to the long-term resilience of communities. When a community's 22 http://www.archives.gov/isoo/policy-documents/eo-12829.html. 23 http://www.fas.org/sgp/clinton/eo12958.html. 24 http://www.archives.gov/isoo/policy-documents/eo-12958-amendment.html.
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192 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE capacity to respond to a disaster is overwhelmed, its very survival depends on how recovery is conducted. If resources are delayed or curtailed during the critical recovery phase of a disaster, it is possible that states, local communities, businesses, and neighborhoods may be unable to rebuild in a resilient way (or not at all) and even greater costs will result over the long-term. RESILIENCE POLICY GAPS AND NEEDS Recognizing that community resilience is advanced by a variety of policies at the federal, state, and local levels, combined with corporate policies and practices, it is important to ask what policies might improve resilience. What policies are absent and badly needed? What new policies should be adopted at each level of government to continue the improvement in the resilience of U.S. communities? Federal policies to strengthen the resilience of communities may be broad or narrow, short term or long term. Because resilience grows over the long term through the application of principles and policies that guide local decisions, the most fruitful policies will be those that acknowledge the broad, long-term needs of communities. Although identification of specific resilience policy gaps is essential to advancing the nation's resilience, an a la carte approach to resilience policy, in the absence of an overall national strategy, may result in contradictory policies or gaps. Strong communication and coordination among agencies and stakeholders will help ensure effective actions. The nature of resilience requires some flexibility and adaptability because the patterns of risk, development, and culture vary so widely among communities (see also Chapters 3 and 5). Consideration of this need for flexibility is important for policymakers pursuing mechanisms to enhance the resilience of communities. The fluid and progressive nature of seeking a resilient community does not lend itself to laws or policies mandating resilience as a perfect condition of a community. Any federal, state, or local policies that attempt to mandate resilience would imply that resilience is a perfectly definable condition, which it is not. Community resilience is highly desirable, but broadly complex, and would be extremely difficult to codify in a single comprehensive law. Rather, governments at all levels have to formulate their own visions of resilience and take the steps in all of their processes to advance resilience through all of its components, forms, and functions, and seek to infuse the principles of resilience into all routine functions of the government. Some ways in which this might be done is the topic of the next chapter. Currently, gaps in policies and programs exist among federal agencies for all parts of the resilience process--including disaster preparedness, response, recovery, mitigation, and adaptation, as well as research, planning, and community assistance. Although some of these gaps are the result of the legislative authorization within which agencies are directed to operate, the roles
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THE LANDSCAPE OF RESILIENCE POLICY 193 and responsibilities for building resilience are not effectively coordinated by the federal government, either through a single agency or authority or through a unified vision about how these roles and responsibilities for promoting resilience could be organized. The roles and responsibilities in the federal government for long-term recovery and improvement of resilience constitute a particularly significant policy gap despite some recent legislation and initiatives. Implementation of PPD-8 should help address this gap. At the state and local levels, many jurisdictions have made excellent progress in taking both a long and broad view of community resilience, and these communities can be used as models. However, many local communities find themselves torn among competing priorities, and the advancement of long-term community resilience is often undermined by the need or desire to address an urgent condition or opportunity in the community. Clearly, policies and processes to improve national resilience at all levels of government will improve as the benefits of resilience are realized and the efforts to improve resilience are integrated across jurisdictions. SUMMARY, FINDINGS, AND RECOMMENDATION Leaders at the local, state, and federal level are increasingly aware of community resilience and how it might be advanced through a variety of decisions and processes. Although many of those critical decisions and processes to improve resilience occur at the state and local levels, the federal government plays a central role in providing guidance for policy and program development to assist local communities in their pursuit of greater resilience. Development of new policies can be informed by an awareness of resilience, how it can be promoted through decisions and processes, and how resilience can be unintentionally eroded through poorly informed decisions. Three significant findings from the assessment of the policy landscape of resilience are: (1) The development of appropriate policies, creation of optimal governance structures, and informed and coordinated management at all levels of government are crucial to improving community resilience. Community resilience will grow as the knowledge, experience, and understanding of these roles and responsibilities grow among decision makers at all levels of government. (2) Currently a multitude of activities, programs, and policies exist at local, state, and federal levels to address some part of resilience for the nation. Several of the critical processes, such as land-use planning and building code enforcement, are the responsibility of local groups or governments. The federal policy role is primarily to ensure that resilience policies are nationally consistent and to provide information and best practices for
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194 DISASTER RESILIENCE: A NATIONAL IMPERATIVE development of appropriate policies at all levels. Consideration of potential unintended consequences of a new policy with respect to disaster resilience is also important. (3) The nation does not currently have an overall vision or coordinating strategy for resilience. Recent work on homeland security and disaster reduction are good beginnings, but the current suite of policies, practices, and decisions affecting resilience are conducted on an ad hoc basis with little formal communication, coordination, or collaboration. In fact, some policies, decisions, and practices actually erode resilience. Implementation of PPD-8 will address some of these consistency and coordination issues. Recommendation: All federal agencies should ensure they are promoting and coordinating national resilience in their programs and policies. A resilience policy review and self-assessment within agencies and strong communication among agencies are keys to achieving this kind of coordination. Such an assessment should reveal how each agency's mission contributes to the resilience of the nation, and how its programs provide knowledge or guidance to state and local officials for advancing resilience. Finally, each federal agency should evaluate its interactions with state and local governments and with the public to evaluate the extent to which its resilience work is made available to those who need it.
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