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Source: United States Senator for Maryland Chris Van Hollen

August 16, 2019

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin and  Congressmen Steny Hoyer and John Sarbanes (all D-Md.) today announced more than $1 million in federal funding for two disaster resiliency research projects in Maryland through the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). These projects are two of twelve awarded nationwide to inform more resilient building designs, codes, and standards by improving our understanding of how earthquakes, wind and fire affect structures. The University of Maryland will receive $550,000 and Jensen Hughes will receive $493,000 for research related to the risks of fire with different materials.

“As climate change increases the threat of extreme weather, we must ensure that our buildings and infrastructure are able to withstand whatever comes their way. This investment will ultimately better prepare communities for natural disasters, allow families and businesses to recover more quickly, and save lives,” said Senator Van Hollen, who has also introduced legislation to ensure that infrastructure projects that received federal funding are built to withstand flood damage. “Maryland institutions are at the cutting-edge of this research, and I will keep working in Congress to ensure we have the resources necessary to keep our families safe and protect our communities.”

“Reducing the impact of disasters on our infrastructure will save lives and improve public safety, lessen the likelihood of environmental degradation, and decrease costs for our businesses and community organizations,” said Senator Cardin, a senior member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “I am confident that these Maryland institutions will produce high-quality research to work toward that goal.”

“Climate change is bringing more frequent and more severe natural disasters, which means we need to build to twenty-first century standards that ensure our communities are more resilient in the face of hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires,” said Congressman Hoyer. “That has been a focus of mine in the Congress, and I’m pleased that these disaster resiliency research projects will receive this critical funding to examine how we can build communities to ensure they can better withstand natural disasters. This is critically important to the safety, livelihoods, and well-being of families throughout our state and across the nation.”

“Maryland is on the leading edge of designing and developing infrastructure that will improve public safety across our country,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “By investing in resiliency research, we can help communities better withstand the stress of natural disasters.”

NIST promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life. NIST is a nonregulatory agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce. To learn more about NIST, visit www.nist.gov.

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