Increasing human intervention with nature and extensive exploitation of natural resources often lead to environmental conflicts and may cause severe environmental deterioration. Most people support the concept of sustainable development - but how should we work towards this in practice? In some parts of Texas, the occurrence of natural and manmade disasters is a main obstacle to progress and the raising of living standard. The Geo-hazardss Assessment and Mitigation division of the proposed effort will deal with the assessment, prevention and mitigation of geo-disasters. The division will research and analyze a wide range of geotechnical problems including flooding, landslides and mudflow, ground subsidence, bridge scour, geophysical assessment, underwater containments of hazardous soils, and vulnerability of buildings and infrastructure to ground vibrations.
It is expected that the Geo-hazards Assessment and Mitigation will cover the following activities:
- Monitoring natural and manmade disasters in Texas
- Research into the nature, origin, and occurrence of the disasters themselves (especially flooding, mudflow, ground subsidence, bridge scour, etc.)
- Modeling of the vulnerability of geo-environment
- Integration with socio-economic models of community vulnerability
- Development of risk models and delivery of multi-disaster risk assessments to communities and emergency managers
- Development of information management systems to improve access to and usage of information, and
- Education, training, and awareness.