Your Superfund
September 29, 2011 10:22 PM   Subscribe

Your Superfund
What environmental catastrophe is your neighbor? A map of all 1.6k Superfund sites and an instant finder for your own by using some interesting math hacks.
Role: programmer, designer, author
posted by tmcw (8 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

That's cool, but I couldn't figure out how to get info on the original cause of the site. In Iowa there are two in Des Moines (or thereabouts). It would be neat to link to stories about each disaster so you can tell what happened how and what is being done about it.

Also, the math hacks link above reminds me of the WOW virus outbreak.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:07 AM on September 30, 2011

Hey - true, currently the main way to get data is to click on a site and then click on the name in the tooltip, which brings you to a url like this, which gives a bit more detailed information. Just having a well-linked database is kind of incredible for the government, but yeah - I'm interested in ways to make this better. Maybe even just linking to a google-lucky search of the site name and superfund would work?

Then, of course, it's all very variable. The data's remarkably complete but kind of dispersed and minimal, and the program itself is widely called a failure. Still deciding how much this should call out the government for massively underfunding the project and rarely cleaning sites.
posted by tmcw at 8:16 AM on September 30, 2011

The click-to-spawn-a-sticky-window thing does seem a bit awkward... is it possible to have the same information appear below the map itself (with both .gov and non-lucky "search for more information" links) in that area, and leave the hover-info for the map area itself?
posted by Evilspork at 9:56 AM on September 30, 2011

This is pretty cool and, um, kind of scary. Am I missing some way to zoom back out after I zoom in?
posted by scottreynen at 7:01 PM on September 30, 2011

@scottreynen: you can use your mousewheel (or other scroller) to zoom back - but, good point - I'll add some zoom buttons.
posted by tmcw at 8:15 PM on September 30, 2011

Locational information is great. Additional information regarding the amount of funding the cleanup effort has taken so far, as well as projections for cleanup completion might make it more useful. Also, if you need pictures of a few of these I might be able to get them for you.

The Elizabeth Mine in Strafford, VT is sort of amazing, in a omg environmental disaster sort of way. When it rains you see the copper residue basically pour down the hillside and flood the river. I pass by it every time I go see my inlaws. The other mine in vershire isn't particularly far either. I'm pretty certain someone fell in it last year or the year before.

Really cool.
posted by Nanukthedog at 9:02 PM on October 1, 2011

Thanks! Threw together a redesign today, which also adds +/- buttons and makes tooltips a bit better.

I've tracked down some good data on sites, so should be able to add a timeline of actions taken and where funding has come from. Pulling in other sources of data might be possible - right now it's cool that a big usage might be grassrootmapping folks finding places to survey.
posted by tmcw at 10:40 PM on October 1, 2011

@odinsdream: Supposedly manure isn't a 'hazardous substance' or 'pollutant' so it isn't cause for superfund attention says this absolutely deplorable lobbyist website.
posted by tmcw at 9:47 AM on October 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

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