How GIS has changed our world


EIA- U.S. Energy Mapping System

Energy maps are one of my favorite maps to look at, mainly because I think it is great seeing how the US is making steps towards clean, renewable energy. Here is a map that I found on that shows all of the energy mapping systems in the US, from clean green energy to fossil fuels. I decided to show only the renewable energy sources on this post, consisting of biomass power plants, geothermal power plants, hydroelectric power plants, pumped storage plants, solar power plants, wind power plants, and wood power plants. On the site you can also look at the fossil fuel sites, transport and storage sites, market hubs, and administrative boundaries. Check out the map and see what is in your area! Is your area a place of more renewable clean sources, or a place that still needs to make the change? Thanks EIA for this great map!

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All information and photo from

Click here to see the site. Contact

“Mapping America’s Healthcare Disparities”- LA Times

I came across a map on that maps America’s healthcare markets and ranks them based on each areas healthcare features and quality. The three feature categories are health insurance, available doctors, and poverty, and the three outcome categories are preventable deaths, avoidable hospitalizations, and recommended care. It is interesting to compare what areas in the US are more prone to poor healthcare quality and which areas seem to be on track.

This is a screenshot of the map that shows the worst to best ranked areas where residents die from preventable deaths

This is a screenshot of the map that shows the worst to best ranked areas where residents die from preventable deaths. (image from

Check out the map and see how your area measures up. Go to or click here – Air Pollution Map

Air pollution is definitely a concern, especially with the growing population. I came across this air pollution map on that shows real-time air quality around the world. The screenshot below is of the United States, and shows that earlier today, we had a good to moderate air pollution level. If you check out the site, you can see a map of the world and compare how each country or continent is ranking in their current air level rate. The map is color-coded with green being good, yellow being moderate, orange is unhealthy for sensitive groups, red is unhealthy, purple is very unhealthy and dark red is hazardous.

Screen shot 2015-07-13 at 7.02.26 PMCheck out what your area looks like, and keep in mind how you can lessen your amount of air pollution! Check out the site by going to or click here.

Mapping Dog Waste

Last month, we were involved in a project that mapped out water drains in urban areas to show how community participatory mapping can be used in preventing urban flood issues. The project which took place in Seoul, South Korea, was a part of UN-GGIM-AP ( We surveyed 164 water drains with volunteers, and found that only 20% of them were functional (25% were covered by something to avoid drainage smell, and 55% was filled or blocked by garbage).

Back in the States, an interesting IMRivers project has been ongoing with the Maryland DNR. Students have been working with Maryland Department of Natural Resources on Storm Drain Stenciling (

Storm drains were designed to be the fastest and most efficient way of getting rainwater off streets and parking lots. Unfortunately, water that flows into the storm drains carry trash and sediment from the street, fertilizers, toxins from pesticides, household cleaners, gasoline and motor oil. All of this rainwater in the storm drains then ends up in the local stream or river.

If you or your group want to make a similar map for your community, let us know! This can also be a great project for students to learn and get involved in urban water issues. IMRivers is a great tool to use for citizen science and civic engagement. Let us know if you would like to do any projects involving civic/citizen engagement using community participatory mapping like IMRivers. Also if you have any interesting mapping stories to share please let us know!



Not only does our team at Vertices work with environmental groups, but we also participate in and work with individuals, groups, and organizations, with disaster relief initiatives. Currently we are working with Korean citizens on a map that provides real-time information on the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak.

Dr. Im and his team have created in order to help organize all of the information on the disease. The map uses Google Map API and our Community Mapping Platform called Mappler, which was created by Dr. Im. This site is based on citizen participatory mapping, which means the public can easily access it and are able to add information. This community map gives the people in Korea a way to view all information on MERS just by accessing the site on their computer or phone.

Screen shot 2015-06-11 at 1.06.37 PM is being updated by several Korean volunteers, and information is being shared on Facebook consistently. This map is a great example of how citizen participatory mapping can improve disaster management. The ability to visit the site and add/update information by using a web or mobile device, again provides the public a quick and easy way to see and add important information.

Dr. Wansoo Im, who also made in 2005, which is based on crowd-sourcing (featured in The New Yorker). Dr. Im and his team also mapped all the available gas stations in the affected US areas during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. His map was used in New York City, and surrounding areas, and by FEMA, Google Crisis Map, and the US Department of Energy during the crisis.

Contact us if you want to use Mappler for your business or project. Visit the MERS site at and check out for more information on Mappler.

Posted by Intern Eva Gerrits. Contact Click here to view the Korean MERS Map.

NRDC- Renewable Energy for America

I found this really interesting map on Natural Resources Defense Council’s website that shows existing and planned renewable energy sources across the United States. I think it is super important to look into and input renewable energy sources, and that the US should continue to be open in incorporating lasting energy efficient sources of power. I feel like many other nations are ahead of us in making the switch from non-renewable to renewable sources, so lets continue to step up! Take a look at the map and see what green energy sources are in your state or soon will be. The map shows wind, solar, advanced biofuel, biodigesters, geothermal, and low-impact hydroelectric facilitates that are currently in the US and planned to be built or operated soon. Check out the site to see the energy map for the US or take a closer look at each state on

This map shows all the existing renewable sources in the US.

This map shows all the existing renewable sources in the US.

Posted by Intern Eva Gerrits. Click here to see the site. Contact

Helpful Links ! Share & Post

Hey Bloggers!

I just wanted to post a view of our company’s (Vertices) sites for you guys to follow & share. As you know, or if your visiting our blog for the first time, Vertices is a GIS Consulting and App Solutions company in New Brunswick, New Jersey. We have our own mapping program called Mappler, that allows the product user to custom a community map that fits their needs. Vertices also does a lot of work with watershed organizations, schools, non-profits, and small to large scale companies. We also train product users on our Mappler application and work with various groups to jump start their community map project. If you, your company, your organization, your group, your school, or your website ever need an easy to read, easy to follow, and easy to contribute too map, CONTACT US! :)

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