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Hawaii to Receive More Than $625,000 in Federal Funding for Tsunami Preparedness

Schatz Led Effort in Appropriations Committee to Restore Funding for Tsunami Mitigation Program

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai‘i), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that the State of Hawai‘i will receive $625,477 in grant funding to support the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA) in its mission to inform and prepare residents for tsunamis. 

“In Hawai‘i, being well-prepared for natural disasters like tsunamis can mean the difference between life and death,” said Senator Schatz.  “This critical funding will help improve our tsunami disaster planning so we can better protect Hawai‘i’s coastal communities and save lives.”

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Schatz has repeatedly championed funding for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) program that provides this grant funding in the Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bill. 

NOAA’s Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program provides funding to coastal states for preparedness activities such as inundation mapping, disaster planning, and tsunami education. Because of these funds, Hawai‘i became one of the first states in the nation to be declared Tsunami Ready.

The grant will support proposed projects that will support HI-EMA in its mission to inform the public of: the risks posed by tsunami; how to prepare for these short notice events; and life-saving mitigating measures. Many of the proposed projects involve collaboration with partnering entities, such as the NOAA Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, the University of Hawai‘i, and a host of other federal, state, and local stakeholders including the general public. These collaborations will improve tsunami resilience for Hawai‘i residents and visitors.