Course Overview

This course is designed to provide an understanding of how the GeoCONOPS can be used to support mission planning, rehearsal, and decision making in support of the National Preparedness Goal.

This course will explain:

  • The purpose of the GeoCONOPS
  • The adoption of the GeoCONOPS into federal doctrine
  • How the GeoCONOPS supports all five core missions of the Homeland Security (HSL) to:
    • Prevent terrorism and enhance security
    • Secure and manage our borders
    • Enforce and administer U.S. immigration laws
    • Safeguard and secure cyberspace
    • Ensure resilience to disasters

What is the foundation of the HSE GeoCONOPS?

The GeoCONOPS has been adopted into federal doctrine through its inclusion in the National Preparedness Goal (PPD-8). This adoption broadens access and visibility of the GeoCONOPS effort by other missions using geospatial information for decision support.

Decision support, enabled by geospatial capabilities, allows situational awareness for understanding location, context, and inter-dependencies necessary for effective integration and information sharing to prepare for specific types of incidents that pose the greatest risk to the nation’s security.

Does the HSL GeoCONOPS align to other federal doctrine?

The GeoCONOPS: A Single Location for a Diverse Community

The intended audience for the GeoCONOPS is the entire geospatial community within the Homeland Security Enterprise (HSE) that supports the mission of the federal government under The Stafford Act, the National Response Framework (NRF) and Presidential Policy Directives PPD-8 and PPD-21. The HSE GeoCONOPS allows users to:

  • Discover and leverage geospatial resources (data, products, capabilities, etc.)
  • Facilitate geospatial information and resource sharing and coordination
  • Find geospatial resources, capabilities, tradecraft, and best practices

How does the GeoCONOPS’ alignment with federal doctrine benefit the geospatial community?

By its alignment with federal doctrine, the GeoCONOPS creates a single location for a diverse community to address a variety of gaps and issues such as:

  • Reducing duplication of effort
  • Improving communication between federal and state/local entities
  • Ensuring that federally derived information reaches front-line mission staff in a timely fashion
  • Directing focus to operational technologies that are proven to address mission requirements
  • Improving coordination by documenting what, when, and where mission information will be available to the community

How does the GeoCONOPS help you?

Provides formal guidance for the conduct of geospatial support
A lack of standardized processes for geospatial coordination often results in critical missions operating without full support. The GeoCONOPS works to provide planners and decision makers means of guidance which detail processes and people who support the geospatial community. This allows users to better prepare for incidents and to be better partners within the geospatial community. It also familiarizes those making the decisions with roles and responsibilities, and contact information necessary to support the homeland security missions and national preparedness goal.

The GeoCONOPS provides planners and decision makers with a road map that details the processes and people who support the geospatial community. This allows users to better prepare for incidents and to be better partners within the geospatial community. It also familiarizes planners and decision makers with roles and responsibilities, and contact information for gathering information necessary to support the National Preparedness Goal. 

How does the GeoCONOPS help you?

Facilitates geospatial resource sharing and promotes best practices

The GeoCONOPS documents the “who, what, and where” aspects of geospatial data which ensures that critical information is shared across the entire geospatial community. The GeoCONOPS facilitates collaboration and resource sharing to get the right data to the right people at the right time.

The GeoCONOPS creates a point of organization for the geospatial community. These organizational efforts are monitored and guided by the Geospatial Interagency Oversight Team (GIOT) which ensures true interagency oversight. This interagency process promotes informed decision making across all phases of an incident.

Why is a GeoCONOPS needed?

The GeoCONOPS makes available geospatial data, capabilities, tradecraft, and best practices in support of the HSE and national preparedness. These resources help the geospatial community strengthen national security and resilience via systematic preparation for threats that pose the greatest risk to the U.S. including acts of terrorism, cyber attacks, pandemics, and natural disasters.

Prevention

Prevention implies a state of readiness or the taking of preventative measures to minimize the impacts of a disastrous event on life and property. Prevention efforts are undertaken in advance of an event and build upon the experiences of past and predictions of future events. In support of prevention activities, the GeoCONOPS provides information about and ways to access such features as:

•Hurricane Evacuation (HURREVAC) models
•Hazards US-Multi Hazard (HAZUS) model
•Capability and Readiness Tool (CARAT)

To find additional information supportingprevention efforts, go to the GeoCONOPS website and find “Prevent” under the mission areas.

Protection

The protection mission addresses capabilities to safeguard against acts of terrorism and man-made or natural disasters. Through collaboration and cooperation, this mission aims to protect the citizens, residents, visitors, critical assets, systems, and networks against risks. In support of protection activities, the GeoCONOPS provides information about and ways to access such features as:

  • Integrated Public Alert Warning System (IPAWS)
  • Warning Alert and Response Network (WARN)
  • Law Enforcement scenarios
  • DHS Common Operating Picture (COP)

To find additional information supporting protection efforts, go to the GeoCONOPS website and find “Protect” under the mission areas.

Mitigation

Mitigation activities are vital to the prevention of reoccurring and foreseen losses as a result of natural and man-made disaster events, and are essential to the development of programs to understand and reduce risk. In support of mitigation activities, the GeoCONOPS provides information about and ways to access such features as:

  • FEMA Risk Map
  • Flood Inundation Mapper
  • New Madrid Earthquake Scenario

To find additional information supporting mitigation efforts, go to the GeoCONOPS website and find “Mitigation” under the mission areas. website and find “Protect” under the mission areas.

Response

The GeoCONOPS provides a framework to identify geospatial resources and capabilities that are needed to support the initial response to a disaster. This is the period of greatest uncertainty due to the lack of accurate information from the field and the large number of questions and requests for information. In support of response activities, the GeoCONOPS provides information about and ways to access such features as:

  • HIFLD Open and Secure Critical Infrastructure Data (formerly HSIP Data)
  • Damage Polygons
  • DHS National Operations Center (NOC)

To find additional information supporting response efforts, go to the GeoCONOPS website and find “Response” under the mission areas.

Recovery

During the recovery phase of the mission, the focus is on providing assistance to communities affected by disaster events, allowing the citizens and institutions to recover as quickly as possible. In support of recovery activities, the GeoCONOPS provides information about and ways to access such features as:

  • HUD Disaster Resources
  • FEMA GeoPlatform
  • American Red Cross GIS

To find additional information supporting recovery efforts, go to the GeoCONOPS website and find “Recovery” under the mission areas.

The Benefits of the GeoCONOPS: Summary

GeoCONOPS is needed to:

•Ensure that the use and output of geospatial information and technical capabilities is timely and accurate
•Provide formal standardized guidance for geospatial coordination and support that is created and adopted by the emergency management community
The purpose of the GeoCONOPS is to:
•Provide a mission blueprint that details what data missions produce, when it is available, and where it can be accessed
•Facilitate geospatial information and resource sharing and coordination
•Help missions to standardize information and to commit their support to the community
 The GeoCONOPS has been adopted by PPD-8 and aligns to the following federal doctrines:
•Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience (PPD-21)
•National Incident Management Systems (NIMS)
•Incident Command System (ICS)
•National Response Framework (NRF) and Emergency Support Function (ESF)
The GeoCONOPS is a tool and body of knowledge that supports each phase of the mission lifecycle:
•Prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery