UCSD leads team to build GIS to assess toxic hazards from Katrina

UCSD leads team to build GIS to assess toxic hazards from Katrina

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Researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) have been awarded $760,000 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) to build a GIS. This system will link to the NIEHS Hurricane Katrina Information Website, providing workers in the field and researchers with up-to-date information regarding toxicant exposure and human health. The supplemental grant was awarded by the NIEHS to the UCSD Superfund Basic Research Program (SBRP), directed by Robert Tukey, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology, chemistry and biochemistry in the UCSD School of Medicine.

Led by researchers at UCSD, the GIS builds upon collaborations among interdisciplinary teams of scientists at UCSD, Duke and San Diego State University. The GIS will contain these aerial maps along with layers of data – including the locations of refineries, oil pipelines and industrial facilities, toxic release inventory data – as well as maps and satellite images of schools, neighborhoods and medical facilities. The information will then be overlaid with demographic information on local populations.