Lab helps cities prep for terror

The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Public Technology Inc. are partnering in an initiative to enhance local governments' ability to monitor, detect and report chemical and biological releases in the atmosphere.

The multiyear initiative called LINC — which stands for the Local Integration of the National Atmospheric Release Advisory Center with Cities — will help local agencies prepare for and respond to urban terrorist attacks involving chemicals and biological weapons.

Livermore, (www.llnl.gov) an Energy Department laboratory based in California, began preparations with Seattle about four to five weeks ago in a pilot program, said Donald Ermak, the national laboratory's Atmospheric Release Assessment Programs leader.

The laboratory is assessing the capabilities of Seattle's fire department, emergency operations center, hazardous material units and mobile command centers. Based on that assessment, the laboratory will provide the city with Web-based tools and databases that map and predict the probable spread of hazardous material at multiple sites.

"We want to wed what we have with what they already have," Ermak said, adding that it will take about six months to fully implement the system in Seattle.

After this initial phase, Ermak said the national laboratory would identify regions where the system could support multiple jurisdictions. The third phase would involve incorporating the federal and state governments.

The project began about 18 months ago when representatives from Public Technology Inc. ({http://www.pti.org} www.pti.org) — the technology arm of the National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties and the International City/County Management Association — visited Livermore to see what technologies could be used in municipalities, Ermak said.

Ermak and several other Energy officials presented LINC and other emerging technologies at PTI's annual conference in Scottsdale, Ariz., last week.

Featured

  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.