The Availability of Food

These maps from 2010 show the availability of grocery store locations and also the percentage of people who had a car to get there. The topic of food availability is already an interesting conversation.. is there enough food? Is there enough food, but it just isn’t distributed evenly? Why is healthy food more expense then unhealthy? Why has food become more of a business then of a way to survive? Take a look at these maps, because they bring another problem into the mix! Transportation and accessibility.

The information for the maps was collected from the USDA Food Environment Atlas and the maps were created by Meharry Medical College.

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Flint Lead Testing Map

This map on michiganradio.org  from February 1st, depicts the results of home lead tests in Flint. The test information, gathered by the State, was then grouped into the following categories to make this map:

  • 0 ppb – no lead detected in the drinking water
  • 1-4 ppb – the EPA deems this range as acceptable
  • 5-14 ppb – exposure is a concern, but still below an EPA “federal action level”
  • 15-49 ppb – a range above the federal action level for lead, but can be treated by filters
  • 50-149 ppb – reaching dangerous levels, but can be treated by filters
  • 150 and above – a range at which the federal government says water filters might not workScreen Shot 2016-04-28 at 11.02.29 AM.png

Looking at this map, trying to determine the source is difficult because no real pattern can be determined. Makes you think about what other areas in the US have horrible water that either hasn’t been discovered yet, or just taken seriously.

Thanks Michigan Radio for the map! All information from michiganradio.org 

Mean PM 2.5 Levels in Air

PM, or particulate matter, are tiny solid or liquid particles found in the atmosphere. Particulate matter is considered the most dangerous form of air pollution as the tiny particles can easily be absorbed by the lungs into the blood stream causing many health issues. The International Agency for Research on Cancer and the World Health Organization both consider particulates to be a Group 1 Carcinogen. PM 2.5 are particulates with a diameter of 2.5 micrometers. PM 2.5 particulates are especially dangerous as their small size allows them to penetrate the lungs more easily. We have taken data from the EPA and created a map that shows the mean PM 2.5 levels across the United States. Check out how clean the air is in your city or state below, and keep checking our site for more maps and data on air and water pollution! Vertices gis consulting community map pm25.png

aqicn.org – Air Pollution Map

Air pollution is definitely a concern, especially with the growing population. I came across this air pollution map on aqicn.org 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 aqicn.org or click here.