One in ten American schoolchildren study within one mile of a potentially dangerous chemical facility, according to the Center for Effective Government's latest interactive map, which we released yesterday. A year ago, the fertilizer facility explosion in West, TX, which destroyed one school and irreparably damaged two others, demonstrated the very real risk these facilities pose, especially to schools and students. Parents and community members need to better understand the risks these facilities pose and demand that facilities be as safe as possible.
The Data and the Map
The Center for Effective Government brought together data on chemical facilities from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Risk Management Program and information on schools (elementary through high school) from the National Center for Education Statistics. The RMP facilities are required to report emergency plans because they produce, use, and/or store significant quantities of certain hazardous chemicals.
Using GIS (geographic information systems), we were able to determine the number of schools and students within a mile radius of these chemical facilities and display them on an online interactive map. The map also makes available demographic information from the 2010 Census. Parents and other community residents can zoom in to a particular local area to see if their children's schools are located near a chemical facility. Users can also search the map by school name or facility name. See...
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Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman 1.973.696.7900 firstname.lastname@example.org have been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.