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By Centre Sismologique Euro-méditerranéen, European-mediterranean Seismological Centre and Chris Browitt


The most disastrous earthquake in the past year, occurred in Iran, centred on the town of Bam, on 26 December, with over 40,000 fatalities. This latest reminder of the human impact of our subject underlines the value of our community’s work to understand earthquakes, their hazards, causes and effects, and to seek ways of mitigating such disasters. To this end, EMSC is extending its activities in two most relevant ways, at present. Remy Bossu has been pursuing an opportunity to help rebuild and develop seismology in south-eastern Europe, which has been held back through the turmoil of recent years. Its seismicity remains poorly monitored, cross-border data exchange is limited, expertise is low and connections with the engineering community non-existent. There is the potential for countries to be overwhelmed by the next large earthquake. Working with the “Stability Pact ” initiative for the region, EMSC in coordination with ORFEUS is helping to create a framework and programme to build a modern capacity over the next few years. We are also working to achieve funding and development for a rapid damage prediction service both for the Euro-Med region and more globally, which would help in focussing national resources on preparedness and both national and international efforts in the immediate aftermath of a destructive earthquake. Alongside these initiatives, the core EMSC service is being maintained and gradually improved with our members’ support. Most recently, our thanks are especially due to LDG for the provision of a complete upgrade of computer hardware

Year: 2004
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