Strenghtening Resilience in Volcanic Areas (STREVA)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Bristol
Department Name: Earth Sciences

Abstract

STREVA will bring together researchers from universities, research institutes and volcano observatories, to explore methods for reducing the negative consequences of volcanic activity on communities. We will work both with the communities facing volcanic threats, and with those responsible for monitoring, preparing for and responding to those threats. Our main partners are volcano monitoring agencies and observatories in Colombia, the Caribbean and Ecuador, and through them, disaster managers and disaster researchers throughout the region, as well as residents of communities at risk. We will use a number of techniques to build links between the project and the wider community, including workshops, running scenario exercises, and using social media to report our results. Our aim, by working collaboratively across different disciplines, is to develop and apply a risk assessment framework that will generate better plans to reduce the negative consequences of volcanic activity on people and assets.

Volcanic risk is a complex problem, which we shall understand by investigating a number of volcanoes, at-risk communities, emergencies and policy responses across the region. These case studies will help us to identify common issues in volcanic disaster risk and ultimately develop regional risk assessment processes. These will be crucial for long-term planning to reduce exposure to volcanic hazards. The countries in which we will work are all middle income and face multiple volcanic threats, often in close proximity to large towns and cities. The main focus will be on six volcanic sites across the Lesser Antilles, Ecuador and Colombia.

We will begin the project by reviewing the secondary literature on three well monitored and active volcanoes, to analyse what has already been done to understand and reduce risk to the surrounding population. Through in-depth empirical research in these volcanic areas we shall begin to develop, test and apply our new risk assessment framework and methods for application. We will then take these lessons and apply them to three high-risk volcanoes where monitoring and understanding is less advanced.

STREVA's work will generate improvements in:
(i) methods for forecasting the start of eruptions and changes in activity during eruption;
(ii) prediction of areas at-risk (the "footprint") from different volcanic hazards;
(iii) understanding of the factors that make people and their assets more vulnerable to volcanic threats;
(iv) understanding of institutional constraints and capacities and how to improve incentives for risk reduction

By the end of the project, our new knowledge will help us to measure volcanic risk more accurately and monitor how that risk is changing. The practical results will be a strengthening in the capacity of stakeholders at different scales (staff in volcano observatories, local and national governments and NGOs) to produce risk assessments for high-risk volcanoes and use them to improve preparedness and response to volcanic emergencies and build resilience in the surrounding communities through long-term planning. In adopting this approach, STREVA will have real impacts in real places, and will significantly advance the fields of volcanic risk analysis and disaster risk reduction.

Planned Impact

STREVA intends to achieve a set of research aims that will create new knowledge for the improved analysis of volcanic risk. This analysis, focussed around 3 'forensic' and 3 'trial' volcanic settings will help shape the process of integrating volcanic risk management in appropriate policies at local, national and regional level.
This will depend on forging trusted relationships with key stakeholders, having compelling and clearly communicated information on the components and dynamics of risk and developing a solid understanding of the complexity of policy processes. In turn, if implemented well, such policies will help to strengthen the resilience of people and assets exposed to volcanic hazards. Policies may include restricting land use, improving early warning systems, developing new building code guidance, supporting particular approaches to relocation and investing in improved education or new communications protocols during crises. In working towards such an impact, STREVA intends to show by example that interdisciplinary research can be applied in volcanic settings in ways that lead to an increase in community resilience.
Outputs of the research undertaken will benefit a number of end users, both immediately and over the longer term. By working with a range of local and regional stakeholders to achieve a better understanding of the components and dynamics of risk in volcanic areas, STREVA aims to improve the policies and practices of businesses, public sector agencies and non-government organisations responsible for reducing disaster risk and building resilience. Those benefitting directly from this research include local governments and other public sector agencies based or working close to the 'trial' volcanoes (such as civil defence authorities), observatories and local elected officials. Although there have been recent signs of unrest, no eruptions have taken place hence local authorities have little experience managing the associated risks. They will be consulted throughout the project and involved in work on forecasting and characterising vulnerability and institutional capacity to deal with different aspects of volcanic risk and will participate in volcanic unrest simulation exercises. Risk assessments produced by WPs 1-4 can be used immediately by these stakeholders to improve decision making, in particular with regard to evacuations and land-use planning in high risk areas. Information from the 'forensic' studies will be made available to local decision makers at the trial volcanoes to help them understand the interactions between different dimensions of risk. These outputs will continue to be of use over the longer term as risk conditions change, as STREVA will develop innovative methods for incorporating broader understandings of risk into quantitative risk assessments and applying these to dynamic, changing risk situations.Beyond the trial volcanoes, national public sector agencies will benefit indirectly from this research. National DRR policies are likely to be strengthened from the inclusion of new approaches to volcanic risk analysis and risk communication. Within the private sector, insurance companies will benefit from information produced by the volcanic risk assessments, which may help to support the development of parametric insurance products for inclusion with the Caribbean Catastrophic Risk Insurance Facility for example. Other likely beneficiaries include international and local NGOs working on disaster risk reduction at community and policy level, whose projects could be improved by more detailed analysis of exposure, vulnerability, capacity and policy processes in study regions, enabling them to develop enhanced advocacy strategies or community-based disaster risk reduction plans. Ultimately, the most important beneficiaries are people whose lives and livelihoods are threatened by volcanic hazards. Their resilience is expected to increase as a result of STREVA's work on the trial volcanoes.

Publications

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Barclay J (2019) Livelihoods, Wellbeing and the Risk to Life During Volcanic Eruptions in Frontiers in Earth Science

 
Title LondonVolcano 
Description A series of 3 short oral history films and a risk communication film targetted at the citizens of St. Vincent 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2014 
Impact Premiered at the University of West Indies Open Campus Literary Festival. Further viewings through 2015 and anticipated 'general release' 
 
Description This is a consortium project so main findings have been input via lead RI reporting. In summary here, the project has:
(1) identified a new quantitative approach for assessing volcanic risk to livelihoods;
(2) developed approaches for characterising population vulnerability;
(3) analysed governance and decision-making at three volcanoes;
(4) developed a new model for volcanic mudflow hazard assessment.

The project is also currently actively:
(1) developing new time-series analyses for correlations in volcano-monitoring data;
(2) analysing the relationship between volcanic activity and response (in terms of evacuation of vulnerable populations);
(3) developing a methodology for multi-hazard assessment of ashfall and mudflow initiation;
(4) developing approaches for regional-scale volcanic ash hazard assessment.

The project is in the process of implementing some of these outcomes with partners in the Carribean, Ecuador and Colombia.
Exploitation Route By working with a range of local and regional stakeholders to achieve a better understanding of the components and dynamics of risk in volcanic areas, STREVA aims to improve the policies and practices of businesses, public sector agencies and
non-government organisations responsible for reducing disaster risk and building resilience. Those benefitting directly from this research include local governments and other public sector agencies based or working close to the 'trial' volcanoes
(such as civil defence authorities), observatories and local elected officials. Beyond the trial volcanoes, national public sector agencies will benefit indirectly from this research. National DRR policies are likely to be strengthened from the inclusion of new approaches to volcanic risk analysis and risk communication. Within the private sector, insurance companies will benefit from information produced by the volcanic risk assessments, which may help to support the development of parametric insurance products
for inclusion with the Caribbean Catastrophic Risk Insurance Facility for example. Other likely beneficiaries include
international and local NGOs working on disaster risk reduction at community and policy level, whose projects could be improved by more detailed analysis of exposure, vulnerability, capacity and policy processes in study regions, enabling them to develop enhanced advocacy strategies or community-based disaster risk reduction plans.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Financial Services, and Management Consultancy,Government, Democracy and Justice

URL http://streva.ac.uk/home
 
Description This is a consortium project so main findings have been input via lead RI reporting. In summary here, so far findings have been used to disseminate the outcomes of community participation in volcano observation and response to eruption in one partner national agency to others. In-country workshops on vulnerability to, and governance processes for, volcanic activity have been communicated across partner countries. Models for lahar dynamics and volcanic source conditions are being used for hazard assessment by one partner agency.
First Year Of Impact 2014
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy
Impact Types Societal,Policy & public services

 
Description Chiles-Cerro Negro
Geographic Reach South America 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
Impact Satellite information provided by us was used to set alert levels at Chiles-Cerro Negro volcano, Ecuador. The alert level was reduced, reducing the likelihood of an evacuation.
 
Description Influenced design of new Community Based Disaster Risk Reduction Activity.
Geographic Reach South America 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Changes in risk reduction strategies via the more explicit involvement of communities at risk in the process of monitoring or characterisation of risk, drawing on our research and new methodologies to do this.
 
Description Membership of Foreign and Commonwealth Office Science Advisory Committee (SAC)
Geographic Reach North America 
Policy Influence Type Participation in advisory committee
Impact Advice to Govt via the Montserrat Volcano Observatory on current volcanic risk
 
Description Building Resilience to Environmental Hazards
Amount £199,358 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/P015719/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2016 
End 07/2017
 
Description ESRC/AHRC Forced Displacement Call
Amount £299,869 (GBP)
Funding ID ES/P004326/1 
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2016 
End 10/2018
 
Description Harnessing 'citizen science' to reinforce resilience to environmental disasters:creating an evidence base and community of practice
Amount £197,268 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/P016014/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2017 
End 09/2017
 
Description NERC International Opportunities Fund
Amount £49,709 (GBP)
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 02/2015 
End 12/2015
 
Description Philippines - Quantitative Lahar Impact and Loss Assessment under changing Land Use and Climate Scenarios
Amount £452,137 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/S00274X/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2018 
End 11/2021
 
Title LaharFlow 
Description LaharFlow is a web-based model for hazard assessment of volcanic mudflows (lahars). 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2016 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Laharflow is now used by hazard assessment agencies in Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, Guatemala and Chile. It has been used for the 2017 hazard map of Cayambe, Ecuador 
URL http://www.laharflow.bristol.ac.uk
 
Description IGEPN 
Organisation Geophysical Institute of the National Polytechnic School
Country Ecuador 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We have shared the outputs from our research which have provided information relevant to monitoring practice (they are the monitoring organisation for volcanoes in Ecuador)
Collaborator Contribution They have co-designed and attended workshops and research seminars, and helped to disseminate the findings from our research
Impact Workshop on the impacts of ash on smallholding farmers (for farmers); Published papers.
Start Year 2012
 
Description Lambda Films 
Organisation Lambda Films
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution We have contracted them to work on risk communication films with them and contributed to the development of this expertise in this company.
Collaborator Contribution They have provided their services overseas at a much reduced cost and also contributed to the editing costs of the risk communication films
Impact We have produced multiple films, shown in country and available on the internet. This has been incorporated into the risk communication strategies of our collaborating agencies.
Start Year 2014
 
Description SRC 
Organisation University of West Indies
Department Seismic Research Centre
Country Trinidad and Tobago 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We have provided information relating to the research in a format most appropriate to this organisation. THey are the volcano monitoring organisation for the Caribbean.
Collaborator Contribution During research visits to the Caribbean, they have attended meetings, provided input and guidance into fieldwork at no cost to the projects.
Impact We have produced a series of risk communication films for St. Vincent. We are still writing collaborative papers and we are running several workshops together to convey the outcomes of our research to appropriate decision-makers. A report can be found here, for example: http://streva.ac.uk/what-we-do/forensic-workshops/st-vincent
Start Year 2012
 
Description Servicio Geologico Colombiano 
Organisation Colombian Geological Service
Country Colombia 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We are collaborating on the creation of new lahar models and new understandings of risk experienced by communities around volcanoes in Colombia
Collaborator Contribution They have contributed to the development of the films and the gathering of data
Impact STREVA films
Start Year 2014
 
Description WB GFDRR 
Organisation University of Bristol
Department School of Physics
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution This is a World Bank project for the Global Fund for Disaster Risk Reduction. It is to create films to improve the communication of volcanic risk. We are bringing our expertise from STREVA in providing advice about structuring and films content - and anticipate providing content.
Collaborator Contribution In including our knowledge into these films this will enhance the impact of our research as these films will be distributed worldwide.
Impact None yet
Start Year 2015
 
Description World Bank GCFDRR Project Volfilm 
Organisation University of Bristol
Department School of Earth Sciences
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We contributed the findings from our own research on films into the construction of new films
Collaborator Contribution They supplied us with resource to create the films.
Impact VolFilms - can be found here - http://globalvolcanomodel.org/volfilm/volfilm-films/
Start Year 2016
 
Description Explosive Transformations workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Workshop designed to engage with poetry, prose and cultural responses to volcanic exhibit. Also designed to create a new exhibit for St. Vincent.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Facilitated discussion with Art Facilitator 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact An Art Facilitator ran a workshop where participants drew and discussed the impacts and relationships created (and destroyed) by volcanic activity.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Impact Films 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact We screened our films during several workshops in St. Vincent and Colombia
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description LondonVolcano 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact We made and erupted a model of Soufriere St. Vincent, we used this as a vehicle to discuss issues around volcanic risk both with UK Public and with SVG policy and decision-makers

We reached around 2,000 schoolchildren in the UK, school children in SVG and have had interested people from around the world but particularly West Indies access our website. This has not only inspired those we reached but has provided positive inputs to our research agenda
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://londonvolcano.com
 
Description Volcanoes Top Trumps 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A team of researchers from the STREVA Project, devised designed and released cards to convey both the impressive and destructive nature of volcanoes. This was done as a collaboration with the brand-owners of Top Trumps. We have also recently released an online digital game more specifically aimed at educators and children.
Our website provides further information but also makes a direct link to current research problems and our research output. An online survey has shown this is popular with teachers and they are using this information.
In the coming year we hope to consolidate our sales and start to use those funds to catalyse further outreach projects.

Our card sale release had a 'Tweet' that reaches > 0.25 million Twitter Feeds.
We have caught the attention of both the national and international science community, with card sales in the USA, Ecuador, Trinidad and Montserrat
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
URL http://volcanoestoptrumps.org