Canada: Esri Canada has announced the completion of the Policy Workbench, a comprehensive demonstration app that can help policy makers better understand Pan-Arctic issues. The web mapping app was created for the Open Geospatial Consortium Arctic Spatial Data Pilot Project (Arctic SDP), an initiative by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) designed to demonstrate the value of enhanced spatial data sharing among organizations.
“The (Arctic SDP) project will ensure that the facts we collect in their data formats are interoperable and can be shared from local to global partners in a seamless way. To date, there has been no such effort to do this and this project is, for the Arctic, a game-changer,” said Prashant Shukle, Director General, Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation, NRCan.
Built using Esri Story Maps, the Policy Workbench app enables analysis of Arctic food security issues, including how environmental changes are threatening traditional food sources like caribou. It has maps showing different aspects of store-bought and country (or traditional) food.
The maps illustrate locations of major retail food stores and their spatial density, transportation routes, 30 years of Landsat imagery, the polar area covered by the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna working group of the Arctic Council, and local language areas.
“Food security has complex policy implications,” noted Alex Miller, president, Esri Canada. “If a population in a certain area doesn’t have access to store-bought food, then they may be more likely to gather, hunt and fish for food to sustain themselves. By integrating these spatial data layers into a single web mapping app, policy makers can gain better insights on how these populations are affected by environmental and other challenges that affect their traditional food supply.”
The Public Workbench app demonstrates how local data and large-scale maps and imagery can be integrated to examine these food security policy issues. Read more about the app in this blog: How can a spatial data infrastructure (SDI) be used for policy decision-making in the Arctic?
Explore the demonstration Policy Workbench app.