Check out EJSCREEN 2016!

Untitled-2By Matthew Tejada

When I travel the country for work, I have the privilege of meeting incredible people who work tirelessly to protect overburdened communities and bring in more resources and opportunities to their neighborhoods. From my own experience, I know how critical it is to have access to data to describe the conditions on the ground and to serve as a common starting point for conversations and collaborations. Yet a lot of the critical information that the government creates and makes available, like cancer risk or proximity to traffic, are stored in huge datasets that are hard to access and even harder to interpret.

One of the ways that the EPA is working to assist folks working on the ground to advance environmental justice is with EJSCREEN, our environmental justice screening and mapping tool. EJSCREEN provides environmental and demographic information in easy-to-access reports and maps to give users a way to measure impacts to better understand areas in need of environmental protection, health care access, housing, infrastructure improvement, community revitalization, and climate resilience.

Click here to watch a 5 minute video on how the EJ Indexes are constructed.

Click here to watch a 5 minute video on how the EJ Indexes are constructed.

EPA released EJSCREEN to the public in 2015. Since the release, EPA has worked extensively to conduct hundreds of outreach events to a broad range of stakeholders in order to answer questions, conduct presentations, and educate the public generally about how to use the tool. EPA has also worked with other federal and state partners to assist in incorporating EJSCREEN into various activities, analyses, and programs.

After a year of public engagement to collect feedback from stakeholders, we are proud to announce the release of the latest version of EJSCREEN, which has an abundance of new features – all of which were requested by our public users – including:

  • inclusion of the National Air Toxic Assessment environmental indicators for cancer risk, respiratory, and diesel PM;
  • scalable maps, that summarize data at the Census block group, tract, or county-level;
  • new layers such as parks/green spaces and unemployment rates;
  • the ability to save sessions and print maps from the home screen;
  • a side-by-side view that allows you to look at different datasets simultaneously; and
  • inclusion of data for Puerto Rico.
CDC Report

CDC’s Public Health Report is one of the new features in EJSCREEN

We know that you are as excited as we are to start using this new updated version of EJSCREEN. To answer your questions about the new data and design of the tool, we will be hosting three webinars! We will be providing you with a basic overview of the tool, demonstrating the new features in EJSCREEN, and answer your questions about EJSCREEN 2016.

Please register for the event via the EventBrite page.

EJSCREEN webinar dates:

June 28 (2 pm EST)
June 30 (4 pm EST)
July 11 (3 pm EST)

We hope that you will participate in using the tool and provide us feedback on how we can continue to improve for use by everyone in the United States. You can also subscribe to the Environmental Justice ListServ so that you can receive updates on our upcoming EJSCREEN activities this summer.

Additionally, we will be launching the EJSCREEN Impact Survey. Your support and continued feedback on EPA’s environmental justice screening tool is invaluable, and we want to hear from you on how EJSCREEN is impacting your work. Again, keep up-to-date with all of these opportunities by subscribing to our EJ ListServ.

We look forward to hearing from you – and in the meantime, we hope you enjoy the new version of EJSCREEN as much as we do!

About the Author: Matthew Tejada is the Director of EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice.

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