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Volume 32, Issue 1

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Wednesday, 16 January 2019 14:59

Former FEMA Admin.: AI Can Marry Urban Planning and Disaster Response

Survivors are still reeling from 2018’s natural disasters as the numbers are coming in: Global losses from disaster last year were 11,000 people dead or missing and $155 billion in damages, according to Swiss Re Group, the world’s second-largest reinsurer.

Estimates were 10,000 dead or missing and $350 billion for 2017, when three record-breaking hurricanes swept through the west Atlantic in the span of a month, and scientists only expect figures to get worse as climate change progresses. A study published Monday by the National Academy of Sciences showed Antarctica’s annual ice loss has increased sixfold since 1979, melting faster in each successive decade.

Tech companies that study data and make government software have taken notice, and a handful of platforms already offer ways to help governments prepare for natural disasters — Hazus is the hazard modeling tool already used by the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, Esri is adding data analytics and AI to its GIS platform, and Denver-based Geospiza maps at-risk populations.

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http://www.govtech.com/biz/Former-FEMA-Admin-AI-Can-Marry-Urban-Planning-and-Disaster-Response.html