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 (www.un-ggim-ap.org). 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 (www.imrivers.org/stencil).

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!

Contact gis@vertices.com

Galveston Bay Foundation

The Galveston Bay Foundation, a non-profit established in 1987, helps to manage issues and concerns of the Galveston Bay, located along the upper coast of Texas. This estuary serves a variety of uses such as commercial and recreational fishing, and marine transportation. Also, the bay area is the petrochemical production capital of the nation, where petroleum refining occurs. In addition Galveston Bay is also a place for hobbies such as bird watching and boating, and currently half the population of Texas lives in the Galveston Bay watershed.

With all of these activities and uses, pollution is a major concern and this foundation does all they can to minimize contamination. One of the many ways that the bay is protected is through the Galveston Bay Action Network. This interactive mapping tool powered by Mappler, is a way that the public and authorities can report and view water- related pollution in the bay area. Below shows the map where you can go for information and to post findings yourself.

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If you are ever in the area and see something then report it! This interactive map is a great way for the public to interact and show concern which can lead to authoritative action. To learn more about the Galveston Bay visit- galvbay.org. To learn more about Mappler visit- www.mappler.net

Posted by Eva Gerrits, Intern. Click here to see the site. Contact gis@vertices.com