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EPA launches user-friendly EnviroAtlas interactive tools

EnviroAtlas enables you to better understand how the decisions your business makes can affect the environment.
EnviroAtlas enables you to better understand how the decisions your business makes can affect the environment.Photo by Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images

Although critically important to human well-being, ecosystem services are often overlooked – especially by businesses. But all that is about to change with the introduction of the EnviroAtlas Ecosystem Mapping Tool.

A collaborative project developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service and Forest Service, and Landscope America – EnviroAtlas is a collection of web-based interactive tools and resources that allows users to explore the benefits people receive from nature.

The key components of EnviroAtlas include:

  • A multi-scaled Interactive Map with broad scale data for the lower 48 states and fine scale data for selected communities.
  • The Eco-Health Relationship Browser, showing the linkages between ecosystems, the services they provide, and human health.
  • Ecosystems services information, Geographic Information Systems and analysis tools, and written resources.

How does this help you and your business? EnviroAtlas seeks to measure and communicate the type, quality, and extent of the goods and services that humans receive from nature so their true value can be considered in decision-making processes.

EnviroAtlas integrates more than 300 separate data layers to help decision makers understand the implications of planning and policy decisions on fragile ecosystmes and the communities who depend on goods and services from these ecosystems.

EnviroAtlas is designed for people in both the public and private sectors – from all levels of government to professionals, researchers, educators, non-governmental organizations, and anyone interested in considering the benefits or impacts of a decision. You can access, view and analyze diverse information to better understand how various decisions you make can affect an array of ecological and human health outcomes.

“Our health and well-being, our economy and our security depend upon healthy ecosystems,” explains Bob Perciasepe, deputy administrator of EPA. “By providing EnviroAtlas … EPA is helping to ensure that anyone making decisions that impact ecosystems will have the best available knowledge to build prosperous communities while conserving our natural resources.”

To view a demonstration video or to learn more access EnviroAtlas, click here.