Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Maps in the News: Bears Ears and Ventura Wildfire

CNN

New York Times


Patagonia REI


Ventura County Fire Department

Places in the News:  Bears Ears and Ventura

The Ball State University Libraries GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) provides access to thousands of cartographic resources from the Collection that may be used for research and learning projects.  Staff of the GRMC also locate and provide access to online cartographic resources that may be used as visual aids for papers and presentations related to current events and social topics, and online maps are produced by a large variety of sources.

News sites such as The New York Times (above, click to enlarge), Washington Post, Vox, CNN, and Slate create useful maps that depict current issues.  And online mapping sites like ESRI and Metrocosm offer unique visual depictions of news events.  However, sometimes the research of cartographic resources leads to new sources—like outdoor sports clothing and gear designer Patagonia.

When President Trump announced the elimination of some of the protected land at the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments, Patagonia REI protested the cuts on their Web page.  The company published maps (above) to show the size of the monuments before and after the cuts.  And the Web page includes statistics related to oil and gas development on public lands.

Governmental social media accounts can also be a valuable resources for the latest maps related to natural disasters and other emergencies.  Local governments often employ the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for tracking and planning emergency response.  For example, the Ventura County Fire Department posts updated maps related to the Thomas Fire on December 5, 2017.

Other government agencies like the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also publish useful maps on their Web pages and social media accounts.  These current events maps are downloaded and archived by the GRMC for use in classroom research and learning.

For more information about using cartographic resources, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.