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Lessons from the Oregon Resilience Plan

Posted on March 14, 2014

The National Disaster Preparedness Training Center (NDPTC), together with the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, welcomed Jay Wilson last Friday, March 14th with a presentation and pau hana

Jay Wilson is the Hazard Mitigation Coordinator with Clackamas County Emergency Management in Oregon and current Chair of the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission (OSSPAC). Wilson presented the Oregon Resilience Plan, his observations of recovery along Japan’s Sanriku Coast, and a recovery planning case study for Minamisanriku in the Miyagi Prefecture of Japan.

The Oregon Resilience Plan took one year to complete, included 169 volunteer subject matter experts, and was developed at no cost to tax payers. The Plan identifies current vulnerabilities, with an emphasis on coastal preparedness, that Oregon communities need to prepare for while focusing on the relationship between sustainability and disaster resilience. Wilson’s presentation on the implementation of recovery measures along the Sanriku Coast included: protective measures of future flood barriers and sea wall elevation, community planning and land use change, and elevated residential areas and roads. Wilson closed with an optimistic discussion about the town of Minamisanriku where a recovery vision is being developed with a plan to relocate the town to higher ground. Using models for 100-year and 1,000-year tsunami events, Minamisanriku is looking to move parts of the community to what used to be forested hillsides. Wilson's discussions provide lessons that Hawaiʻi can learn from as examples in which communities are improving disaster risk reduction measures.