"In 1977, Congress authorized the creation of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) to improve the Nation's understanding of earthquake hazards and to mitigate their effects. Earthquakes are the most costly natural hazard faced by the United States. Twenty-five years of work by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in close cooperation with the three other NEHRP agencies, has yielded major advances in earthquake preparedness and monitoring, as well as a vastly improved understanding of earthquake hazards, processes, and effects. The USGS is poised to build on these accomplishments, helping through NEHRP to protect lives and property in the future earthquakes that are certain to strike the United States."
U.S. Geological Survey: http://www.usgs.gov/