The BSEC Ad Hoc Working Group on Seismic Risk was established by the Resolution of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the BSEC Member States, on 8 June 2011, in Bucharest.
The activities of the Ad Hoc Working Group are defined by Goal 17” Cooperation in Emergency Situations” of the” BSEC Economic Agenda Towards an Enhanced BSEC Partnership” and are guided by the relevant Resolutions, Decisions and Recommendations of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, decisions of the Ministers in charge for Emergency Assistance of the BSEC Member States, the BSEC Public Communication Strategy and the Terms of Reference of the Working Group.
The Ad Hoc Working Group of Experts in Seismic Risk, according to its Terms of Reference is subordinated and reporting to the Working Group on Cooperation in Emergency and follow the provisions of the Agreement among the Governments of the Participating States of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC).
Every year, experts in seismic risk meet at the BSEC Headquarters and attend to seminars and trainings on emergency assistance organized in BSEC Member States. Currently, there are 13 member countries in the Working Group: Republic of Albania, Republic of Armenia, Republic of Azerbaijan, Republic of Bulgaria, Georgia, Hellenic Republic, Republic of Moldova, Republic of North Macedonia (recently joined), Romania, Russian Federation, Republic of Serbia, Republic of Turkey and Ukraine.
The aim of this group is to promote cooperation among the seismologists in the BSEC Region with the aim to mitigate seismic risks, enhance early warning, elaborate recommendations for rescue operations, and develop regional risk assessment programs.
The objectives of the Working Group are the following:
- to contribute to seismic protection of the population, through seismic risk reduction in the BSEC Member States;
- to launch multilateral cooperation of appropriate national authorities, seismological institutes and centers as well as of representatives of the engineering communities, other institutions/centers, dealing with seismic risk reduction;
- to contribute to the application of the achievements of seismology and earthquake engineering in developing effective measures for seismic risk reduction;
- to elaborate minimum threshold seismic safety levels for hazardous facilities with due account of existing international regulations;
- to elaborate methods for the protection of monuments and historical buildings and to support their application.
To implement the above objectives, the Working Group will:
- develop facilities and means for seismic risk reduction such as seismic hazard and risk assessment, seismic codes, and design standards according to relevant euro codes, seismic-resistant construction and strengthening of existing buildings, public education early warning and notification system design, etc.
- exchange scientific and relevant technological information and data and organize technology transfer through the implementation of multilateral programs and projects;
- contribute to the strengthening of the scientific and technological potential of the BSEC in the said fields;
- develop mutually beneficial relations with appropriate international institutions and organizations;
- have a dialogue with decision-makers, public institutions, relevant NGOs, research and technological centers, universities, business and financial circles.