THE NETWORK OF STATES -
Whether dealing with issues like Ralstonia solanacearium (geranium wilt), Exotic Newcastle Disease, Hurricane Isabelle, BSE (mad cow disease), or continued homeland security issues, EDEN links Extension educators from across the U.S. and various disciplines. Educational Web pages are created and up-to-date information is shared throughout the network to help reduce the impact of disasters.
Extension communications co-leader/EDEN Point of Contact Virginia Morgan, assistant Extension director, and Auburn University plant pathologist, met with Alabama Emergency Management Agency assistant director to discuss potential partnerships.
Extension has taught the Incident Command System (ICS) to and conducted two drills with agents and other partners. The drills helped Extension staff realize they had a role, and others recognize Extension’s resources and knowledge. As a result, new annexes are being drafted for animals and other topics to include Extension.
Bruce Wilbur, EDEN Point of Contact, is visiting each county office to help develop local disaster plans. After the anthrax episode, interagency relationships have been restructured for more cooperation.
Steve Cain, EDEN Point of Contact, helped develop the Indiana agriculture homeland security strategy. This strategy sets the stage for investments to improve Indiana agriculture’s ability to detect, diagnose and eradicate potential bioterror threats. The strategy involves Purdue Extension as a partner.
Tom Priddy, EDEN Point of Contact, presented at the governor’s conference on homeland security in Kentucky, which resulted in the Extension director asking that a Kentucky EDEN Web site be developed.
LSU created a hurricane tracking chart that includes contact information for Extension and other agencies and organizations. The university received a hazard mitigation grant for education after last year’s hurricanes.
Mark Hansen, EDEN Chair, e-mails emergency management 1-minute tips to 1090 subscribers, both in Michigan and other states, every few weeks. MSU Extension also is a member of the state steering committee to develop an agriculture and food security strategy for the state.
Extension created a Weather Impacts: Drought Web page. In addition, John Shutske, EDEN Point of Contact, developed press materials on droughtstressed corn and its increased potential to contribute to high levels of nitrogen dioxide when corn silage is made. Shortly after that, the National Safety Council published a similar national alert using resources and information from the Web site.
Penn State, the University of Pennsylvania and Carnegie Mellon have applied for a homeland security grant. Extension will be the outreach component.
Training in emergency preparedness has positioned Extension faculty to respond by activation of the Foreign and Exotic Animal Disease (FEAD) Emergency Management Plan. TAMU also conducted a workshop, “Preparing for the Unexpected,” to provide the county educators with resources that can be used in conducting educational programs at the local level.
A Utah-specific EDEN Web site has been created at extension.usu.edu/cooperative/ueden/. Fact sheets, resource information, county Extension contacts, and more are shared in a variety of topic areas.
West Virginia –
WVU is working to institutionalize capacity building. Extension has been involved in state hazard mitigation planning and has a contract to help develop continuity of government plans.