3rd Annual CBRNe Convergence Orlando05 June 2012 0
Much like last year the feedback was immense: 96% of the feedback forms rated the conference overall as good or excellent, 95% also rated the organisation as good or excellent, while 83% felt that
the subjects covered were good or excellent. Despite having come under some criticism for choosing Vil Mirzayanov as a speaker, a surprising number of people attended just to hear him speak and rated him as one of the major draws for the conference – win some, lose some! The Conference started with an Introduction to Medical Countermeasures Workshop, with presentations from the Transformational
Medical Technology (TMT) and Chemical and Biological Medical Systems (CBMS), both divisions from the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense (JPEO CBD). It concluded with presentations from Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The aim of the Workshop was to bring
together the major players into one room and in an afternoon provide an overview of what the programs are doing.
The opening of the exhibition saw a very brisk crowd examining the various products and services that many of the Exhibitors showcased. The exhibition was truly multi-national with Swiss, British, French, German, Austrian, Italian and Canadian companies joining their US counterparts to show every aspect of the CBRNE defence spectrum.The morning started with opening remarks from Major General (Retired) Steve Reeves (who, along with Steve Johnson, did a great job of keeping the days running to time and injecting insight), and then went into the opening morning plenaries. For many, Assistant
Director Majidi, of the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)Directorate, was one of the best speakers, bringing home the fact that while there might not be the WMD attack that many are concerned
about, there is a steady flow of CBRN incidents and attacks. As well as being a Supporting Partner Organisation (along with 20th Support Command, TMT, ASPR, CBMS, 44th CST and the local
responders), the presentation was useful in setting the next two days in context – that this was a real threat, that perceptions might need to be changed,but the response should not be relaxed.
The final day was the dynamic exercise, with participants from the FBI, 44th CST, Orange County Fire and Orange County Police. Hundreds of delegates turned out to see the demonstration which showed all aspects of Orlando’s capability – from mitigation through to decontamination and disaster management. Literally starting with a bang it brought in conventional and nonconventional assets to be able to deal with a multi-threat incident. Again the quality of the exercise owed very little to the efforts of CBRNe World and everything to the hard work put in by the local FBI office and the other participants: special
thanks has to go to Greg Tarbert and Kelly Boaz, both of the FBI. CBRNe Convergence continues to grow.2010 had almost 650 people, 2009 had nearly 400 and 2008 had approximately 250 – a growth of
approximately 50% every year. As such we are now being forced to put down roots, in terms of time – so people can budget – and produce better schedules as to where we will be. As such we can
announce that 2011 will be the first to the fourth of November in Istanbul, in the Military Museum (or Askeri Muze), and that 2012 will return to the East Coast of the US.
workshop, in March in Rio de Janeiro.