On September 30, 2023 FOIAonline—the government-wide online portal for Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and case management—will be decommissioned. For more than a decade, FOIAonline has served as a critical transparency tool through which the public could not only file requests and receive records, but also browse and search through records released to others and by multiple agencies. Starting October 1st, FOIAonline will be taken down, and the 1.8 million public records it holds will be taken down with it.
Is it as safe to drink tap water in Paterson as it is in more affluent, whiter communities nearby, such as Wayne? EDGI’s new tool, available at sdwa-eew.streamlit.app, is designed for college students to answer questions such as this and explore the intersection of drinking water safety with social justice in New Jersey.
I grew up in unincorporated Snohomish County, Washington—an area I often characterized, at the time, as the kind of place where people have guns and horses. As a kid, the woods behind my house felt like an endless adventure: a massive Pacific Northwest wetlands, where beavers would build ever-changing dams you might cross on foot (if you didn’t fall in), where stickerbushes grabbed at your clothes, and dripping thick underbrush would open up into spacious cedar groves that, even to a child, felt sacred.
We are very grateful to present this annual report for fiscal year 2022. In the midst of the intensifying climate emergency and growing evidence about the dangers of pollution, we are relieved to see the federal government working to address environmental injustices, especially for communities disproportionately burdened.
This October marks the 50th anniversary of the 1972 Clean Water Act (CWA). With the original goal of eliminating point-source pollution within ten years, the CWA articulated nationwide water quality standards to protect both public health and wildlife habitats. Fifty years later, and over seventy years after the onset of hydraulic fracturing (or fracking), federal loopholes and the structure of the CWA itself have left fracking largely unregulated.
In July of this year, EDGI’s Website Governance Project participated in the Earth Science Information Partners’ (ESIP) summer meeting in Pittsburgh. ESIP is a collaboration network made up of government scientists, research centers, and educators working to make earth science and related data more accessible and usable. The theme for this year’s summer meeting was “Data for All People: From Generation to Use and Understanding.”