Environmental research and problem solving involve large, complex geospatial data sets and associated models that must be integrated, managed, and disseminated to user communities. The users can range from a handful of specialized researchers studying fundamental processes to large general audiences in the case of environmental impact statements that generate significant public interest.
The challenge is to provide cost-effective, intuitive portals to user communities—ideally portals flexible enough for inclusion of new data sets and models as they become available and readily scalable to accommodate audiences of any size.
Commercial software such as Esri's Portal and Server products provide out-of-the-box geospatial frameworks that can be adapted readily to a wide variety of needs. Commercial products offer turn-key portals for a variety of applications and can be a cost-effective, efficient solution in many cases. EVS has experience extending and adapting Esri frameworks/portals to address project-specific needs for settings as varied as facility management, enterprise geographic information systems (GIS), field data collection support, and homeland security.
EVS has developed innovative web-based geospatial portals that leverage open-source standards and software, in work for DOE and the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Included are the following:
- The Energy Zone Mapping Tool, for federal and state planners, non-governmental organizations, grid operators, and energy industry professionals interested in clean energy development in the eastern United States.
- Solar Energy Environmental Mapper (Solar Mapper), providing customized public access to utility-scale solar energy resources and related siting factors in the six southwestern states studied in the Solar PEIS (Solar Energy Development Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement).
EVS is currently working with DOE to develop and launch an innovative pilot web site that facilitates environmental reviews and permitting, under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), by allowing users to upload, style, and edit geospatial data sets in collaboration with other agencies, stakeholders, and members of the public.
EVS is particularly well suited for these innovative projects, whether they involve open-source approaches, commercial products, or a blend of the two. EVS has more than 25 years of experience in applying GIS in environmental analyses; a dedicated team of experienced web interface and server-side programmers; a solid technical foundation in supporting environmental disciplines such as ecology, hydrology, climatology, and environmental engineering; and expertise in high-performance computing/big data challenges embodied in the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility.
Related Research Areas
See the Research Highlights Index for a complete list of EVS Research Areas.