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Welcome to the interactive web schedule for the 2018 Spring NEARC Conference! For tips on how to navigate this site, visit the "Helpful Info" section. To return to the NEARC website, go to: www.northeastarc.org/spring-nearc.html.

UPDATE AS OF MAY 16: Some of our presenters have made their slides or other resources available to download. Under the "Filter by Type" heading, click on "Presentation Slides Available" to view which ones have been posted. Check back for updates! 

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Posters [clear filter]
Tuesday, May 8
 

8:00am

POSTER: A Landscape Genetics Approach to Identifying Canada Lynx Populations Under Threat of Local Extinction
AUTHORS: Tanya Lama*, University of Massachusetts Amherst; John Organ, US Geological Survey Cooperative Research Units; Stephen DeStefano, Massachusetts Cooperative Research Unit; Warren Johnson, Smithsonian Institution; Jennifer Vashon, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

ABSTRACT: The Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) is a widely-distributed, North American felid that exists at low-densities in boreal forests capable of supporting its primary prey source, the snowshoe hare. As a habitat and prey specialist listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, Canada lynx are vulnerable to adverse impacts of climate change. We use a landscape genetics approach to identify lynx populations most at-risk of local extinction by integrating molecular (genetic), ecological (species specific), and environmental (landscape) data. Our framework assesses each population's exposure to climate change impacts, adaptive capacity, and potential to shift or disperse to suitable habitat. Ultimately, our goal is to inform the management of six lynx conservation units in the United States (Northern Maine, Northeastern Minnesota, Northwestern Montana/Northeastern Idaho, North-central Washington, the Greater Yellowstone Area, Western Colorado).

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: A LIDAR-Based Approach to Derivative Map Production and Visualizing Bedrock Topography Within the Towns of Proctor and Pittsford, Vermont, USA
AUTHORS: Griffin Shelor*, Green Mountain College; John Van Hoesen, Green Mountain College

ABSTRACT: Surficial and bedrock geologic maps have a useful potential for state and national geologic surveys to produce map products which serve as a value-added deliverable for a variety of stakeholders. The production of these derivative products was facilitated by the three-dimensional capabilities and enhanced geostatistical exploratory tools within many geographic information systems (GIS). Many GIS software packages can render three-dimensional visualizations using spatially-distributed point data. We used recently released 0.7-meter LIDAR, private well data, and ESRI's "Geostatistical Analyst" tool, to create derivative maps depicting surficial overburden, bedrock topography, and a potentiometric surface. These products demonstrate the relevance and usefulness of creating three-dimensional visuals in conjunction with typical two-dimensional map products. Three-dimensional visualizations have particular use with regards to town managers and planners, who may be relatively unfamiliar with traditional geologic map products and can better visualize and interpret relationships between surficial overburden and groundwater resource potential.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Arsenic: Watery Do Now?
AUTHORS: Luke Davis*, Eastern Connecticut State University; Meredith Metcalf, Eastern Connecticut State University

ABSTRACT: Arsenic is a life threatening substance that has become more prevalent in drinking water wells of New England. Many studies have suggested that the source of arsenic is directly related to the bedrock, however there has been no statistical evidence to support these findings. This objective of this study was to determine whether arsenic in groundwater was more likely to occur in discharge areas which would support that arsenic occurrences were naturally occurring. In cooperation with the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the Connecticut Department of Public Health, a random distribution of bedrock wells throughout Pomfret were sampled and analyzed for water quality parameters which included arsenic. Common water quality parameters and the distance between wells and discharge areas were evaluated using multivariate regression to determine which factors, if any, were significant in predicting observed arsenic concentrations. Forty-three percent of the wells tested positive for arsenic; 20% of the wells had arsenic concentrations exceeding the EPA drinking water standard of 10 micrograms per liter. Although the wells sampled were randomly distributed across Pomfret, the distance between the wells and discharge areas was the only statistically significant variable and explained 18.2% of the observed arsenic concentrations. Additionally, wells with arsenic occurred when water quality conditions showed dissolved oxygen concentrations were high and oxidation reduction potentials were positive which suggests that arsenic would mostly likely occur in recharge areas. In conclusion, the observed arsenic concentrations in Pomfret are most likely explained by anthropogenic sources rather than naturally occurring.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Contributions To Air Pollution Is Not The Solution
AUTHORS: Bryce Mase, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Discovering the Roots of Connecticut’s Opioid Epidemic
AUTHORS: Sam Evans, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: From Reckless to Wreck-Less
AUTHORS: Jenn Croteau, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Is Connecticut Public School Funding Fair?
AUTHORS: Noah Hallisey, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Japanese Honeysuckle: The Bittersweet Invader
AUTHORS: Ryan Cueto, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Keep Calm, We Can Continue to Drink On!
AUTHORS: Tara Brooks, Eastern Connecticut State University; Meredith Metcalf, Eastern Connecticut State University

ABSTRACT: As population continues to increase, sustaining the quantity of groundwater in fractured bedrock aquifers of New England will become critical. However, quantifying groundwater in bedrock is difficult due to the complex processes involved. This lack of knowledge on the amount of water available results in homeowners using water at rates that may lead to depletion. This study evaluated the sustainability of the fractured rock aquifer for Lebanon, Connecticut which are aquifers typical within New England. Recharge and discharge rates were calculated using groundwater drainage basins delineated from a digital elevation model and associated well characteristics from well completion reports given the lack of measurements typically monitored. Results indicated that only one groundwater drainage basin was unsustainable and located in northeastern Lebanon. For the town of Lebanon, the average rate of recharge for the groundwater basins delineated exceeded the average rate of groundwater use which implies that majority of residents would be less likely to deplete sources of groundwater. In conclusion, results of this study demonstrated the effectiveness of well data in estimating groundwater sustainability. Additionally, results indicate that groundwater in fractured rock was sustainable in Lebanon most likely because of the lack of development in this area yet the potential for drainage basins to be at risk for becoming unsustainable does exist. Therefore, homeowners should be educated to prevent over use of this critical resource and a system to monitor basins at risk for depletion should be established at the local level.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Mapping and Analysis of Walkability and Bikeability on the Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack, New Hampshire
AUTHORS: Matt Waitkins, Nashua Regional Planning Commission; Sara Siskavich, Nashua Regional Planning Commission; Ryan Friedman, Nashua Regional Planning Commission; Andrew Smeltz*, Nashua Regional Planning Commission

ABSTRACT: Making roadways and other urban infrastructure favorable for bicycles and pedestrians has numerous benefits for communities and society at large. In order for planners to make informed decisions on where to allocate resources for bicycle and pedestrian improvement projects, it is necessary to review and analyze a variety of GIS data sources and take input from constituency groups. In this project, staff members from Nashua Regional Planning Commission (NRPC) assisted the Town of Merrimack, NH, acting through its planning board, in compiling and analyzing various types of spatial data, which we used to map current conditions for bicycling and walking on the Route 3 (Daniel Webster Highway) corridor. Our goal was to assist the town in identifying areas most in need of improvements to pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure. NRPC collected field data on existing pedestrian and bicycle features using the NH Statewide Asset Data Exchange System (SADES), which we merged into an existing statewide dataset. With ArcGIS, we analyzed roadway segments for bicycle and pedestrian level of stress and mapped these findings in the context of datalayers characterizing existing conditions. We also synthesized the planning board?s anecdotal observations and added them to the map as graphical elements. Our final product is a map that incorporates objective spatial data with interpretive analysis. After further public comment and any subsequent refinement, the map will be used to inform a corridor plan that summarizes analyses, recommendations, and action steps that address the town?s specific goals and priorities for pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Mapping and Geospatial Analysis of stone Walls in Massachusetts and Connecticut
AUTHORS: Cheyenne Haverfield*, University of Connecticut Center for Integrative Geosciences; William Ouimet, University of Connecticut Center for Integrative Geosciences and Department of Geography

ABSTRACT: From the 17th to early 20th century, deforestation and agricultural growth was common in the northeastern United States. The amount of land cleared in most of the region reached a peak around 1850 and forests regrew after that time. Today, LiDAR point clouds and derivative bare earth rasters (DEMs, hillshades, and slope maps) can be used to identify and analyze relict land use features beneath the forest canopy, such as stone walls, that are indicative of historic land clearing for agricultural purposes. This presentation focuses on mapping and analyzing datasets of stone walls in select towns in Massachusetts and Connecticut. All towns studied lie outside the Connecticut River valley in terrain underlain mainly by glacial till. Massachusetts towns typically have fewer length of stone walls (per sq km) than Connecticut towns. In Massachusetts, high stone wall density consistently occurs within terrain mapped as non-forest in 1830 town survey maps. In the context of modern day land cover maps, we see a shift where high-density stone wall areas can exist equally within modern forest and non-forest areas. Areas mapped as non-forest today, particularly developed areas, often have a lower amount of stone walls - reflecting either removal of walls or that road construction and development obscure stone walls in LiDAR data and lead to fewer being mapped in those areas. Overall, stone wall datasets are valuable resources not only for analysis of historic land clearing, but also for conservation and preservation efforts in forests throughout the region.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Mapping Inequality Using ArcGIS Online
AUTHORS: Sarah Hoskins, Wellesley College

ABSTRACT: This semester, I used ArcGIS Online to introduce students in a college sociology class to mapping and spatial visualization. I, a GIS Librarian, worked with a professor to create a month long mapping unit as part of the Social Inequality: Race, Class and Gender course. I introduced ArcGIS online with an in-class workshop in which we calculated the percentage of Boston's Black residents that live within a close walk to the T. For the sake of class time, I used ArcGIS Online?s ability to share material within a group to pre-load the relevant data. In a follow-up class, we used a historical mapping project on redlining as a springboard for brainstorming topics, followed by a discussion of sources of spatial data and metadata. Students worked in thematic groups over three weeks to investigate and spatially represent a systemic inequality, leading to a group presentation. The poster will cover the planning process that went into the assignment, the partnership between a GIS tech professional and a professor, why we chose ArcGIS Online and how the students reacted to it, and strategies for teaching with ArcGIS Online.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Rapid, Widespread Mosaicking and Orthorectification of Historic Aerial Photographs using Agisoft Photoscan
AUTHORS: Eli Egan-Anderson*, University of Connecticut; Dr. William Ouimet, University of Connecticut

ABSTRACT: Recent technological advances in automated image processing allows new information to be extrapolated from aerial photographs collected prior to the 1980s ? which are seldom orthorectified or mosaicked. In Connecticut alone, there are 4 statewide, unprocessed aerial photographs campaigns (1934, 1951/52, 1965 and 1970) that range in scale from ~1:5000 to 1:20000. For each campaign, individual, overlapping images are available online, but mosaics of multiple images that have been orthorectified to remove the distortion from the lens of the camera and the effects of topographic change do not. Here, we present the results of a study where we are using the software Agisoft Photoscan to automate spatial data processing, rapidly stitch together and orthorectify overlapping aerial photographs to create orthomosaics of large areas within Connecticut in 1934. We use multiple, easily identifiable features in both the aerial photography and LiDAR DEMs as geographically referenced control points. Photoscan orthomosaics are an accurate representation of the Earth's surface that preserve scale across the entire image, reliably allowing comparison with more recent datasets (e.g., 2016 Connecticut statewide 4 band orthoimagery and QL2 lidar). Once created, orthomosaics of past aerial photographs can be used to create land cover classifications that can be compared to more recent classifications (e.g., NLCD 2011 or Connecticut Land Cover maps made through CLEAR for 1985 to present). Overall, orthomosaics from aerial photographs collected prior to the 1980s has the potential to greatly improve our understanding of land use history and landscape change in Connecticut.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Read a Book, Don’t be a Crook
AUTHORS: Madie Varney, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Reducing Fuel Dependency Through Better Building Performance
AUTHORS: Mario Vinci, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Saltmarsh mapping for the north-mid-Atlantic cost using Landsat 8 imagery
AUTHORS: Jenny Petrario University of Rhode Island

ABSTRACT: This Study uses Landsat 8 satellite imagery to perform salt marsh mapping analysis to reveal the spatial distribution and conditions of salt marshes along the north-mid- Atlantic coast. The results would provide the baseline data (2017) for change analysis and comparison for similar data in other years. NOAA Coastal Change Analysis Program (C-CAP) 2010 data were used as the reference to delineate the salt marsh and adjacent areas from Landsat 8 imageries. There were 6 scenes downloaded for the study area ranging from July 7, 2017 to September 11, 2017 with less than 10 percent cloud coverage. This study used an object-based image analysis (OBIA), which first breaks up the image into objects and then classifies the objects based on their spectral signature. Finer spatial resolution salt marsh mapping derived from Worldview-2 and Quickbird-2 satellites for Fire Island National Seashore are used as ground verifications. The objective of this study is to (1) identify the salt marsh extent along the mid-Atlantic coast line; (2) improve classification accuracy of Landsat 8 imagery in salt marsh mapping. Result is to be presented at the conference.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Sighting In On Firearm Ownership In Connecticut
AUTHORS: David Bafumo, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Trends in Adverse Outcome Births in Massachusetts from 2000-2014
AUTHORS: Madeleine Haynes, Clark University; Dr. Yelena Ogneva-Himmelberger, Clark University

ABSTRACT: This study explores spatio-temporal trends in adverse birth outcomes (ABO) in the state of Massachusetts from 2000-2014. ABO includes low birth weight (< 2500 g) and preterm birth (gestational age <= 37 weeks). This research evaluates if there are areas in Massachusetts that have experienced statistically significant increases or decreases in ABOs throughout the study period. Birth data was obtained from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and only singleton live, black births were selected for the analysis. The data were aggregated to census tracts, and the total number of births and the number of ABOs were calculated for each census tract for each year. In total, 1469 census tracts were included in this analysis. A Space-time cube of ABO rates was created in ArcGIS software, with a time step of one year and 200m x 200m spatial bins. Temporal trends in ABO rates were assessed using the Mann-Kendall statistics. The Mann-Kendall test shows statistically significant upward trends in 66 census tracts (increase in ABO rates over time) and significant downward trends (decrease in ABO rates over time) in 56 census tracts. These tracts are randomly distributed throughout the state and do not form apparent spatial clusters. It is apparent that a majority of the study area did not show any statistically significant trend over time, but the areas that showed statistically significant trends need to be further evaluated in order to potentially initiate public health interventions and awareness.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Success and Challenges Using ArcGIS Mobile Apps
AUTHORS: Neil Curri*, PVE, LLC; Anna Abrams, Vassar College; Ken Casamento, LRC Group; Elise Chessman, Vassar College; India Futtermana, Vassar College; James Kelly, Vassar College; Stephen Kovari, Vassar College; Jennifer Rubbo, Ecological Cooperative at Vassar Barns; Mark Schlessman, Vassar College; Samuel Short, Vassar College; Keri Vancamp, Vassar Ecological Preserve

ABSTRACT: ArcGIS mobile apps have been used for a various field data collection projects at Vassar College, including an inventory of the college's arboretum tree collection, inspecting and monitoring stormwater infrastructure, managing horticultural planting beds, and collecting bird observations at the Vassar Farm & Ecological Preserve. This poster outlines the successes and challenges of configuring and using these apps.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: The Bees Needs
AUTHORS: Zach Adams, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: The Role of Invasive Species in the Plant Trade Industry
AUTHORS: Eve Beaury*, Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, University of Massachusetts Amherst

ABSTRACT: Invasive plants are a growing concern with well documented, negative ecological and economic impacts. Humans unwittingly introduce the majority of exotic plants by importing, purchasing, and planting invasive species as ornamental plants in our home gardens. To understand the scope of this problem, this project identified a list of plants in the United States that are considered invasive by governmental organizations and The Invasive Plant Atlas, both of which are informed by expert opinion. Standardized Internet searches on a subset of these species determined the extent of invasive plant sales, revealing hundreds of vendors of invasive plants including commercial nurseries and sales through sites like eBay and Amazon. Specifically, across 46 of 48 continental U.S. states, we identified 225 nurseries that currently sell one or more invasive plants. Very few of these vendors warn consumers about the ecological harm these species cause. Several vendors offer a plant for sale within a state attempting to eradicate that species and/or sell a species blacklisted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. These results highlight the apparent role of the plant trade industry in the widespread distribution of invasive species, as well as the disconnect between the government listing a species for regulation and enforcement of these regulations. In addition to advocating for increased invasive species awareness, we encourage plant suppliers and the gardeners, arborists, and landscapers contributing to the demand of invasive species to plant locally, thus reducing the plant trade industry's contribution to ecological invasions.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Using GIS to Characterize and Compare Preferred Habitat for Riverine Dragonflies
AUTHORS: Rebecca Budd*, Westfield State University; Peter Hazelton, Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program; Carsten Braun, Westfield State University

ABSTRACT: Dragonfly larvae spend 3-5 years in an aquatic environment before emerging as adult dragonflies. They inhabit a wide variety of wetlands including lakes, marshes and rivers and are considered to be an indicator of freshwater ecosystem health. Conservation scientists monitor rare and common dragonflies to assess population trends, identify vulnerable habitats, and determine conservation priorities. Species with specific habitat requirements are more sensitive to habitat degradation and changes in climate and land use. As a conservation tool, GIS can be used to efficiently analyze habitat characteristics at locations where each species has been observed. Our analysis combines existing riverine dragonfly survey data from the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program with the Nature Conservancy's Northeast Aquatic Habitat Classification Dataset using ArcGIS. Habitat characteristics including river size, gradient, buffering capacity and temperature were summarized and compared for selected species. We used habitat preference data to identify and select rivers of potential occurrences for two related species; Boyeria grafiana and Boyeria vinosa. Boyeria grafiana is less common in Massachusetts and only occurs west of the Connecticut River while Boyeria vinosa is common and occurs throughout the state. This analysis found that B. grafiana prefers moderately buffered, moderate gradient, cool and cold water creeks and small rivers while B. vinosa inhabits a wide range of available riverine habitat. We also found that there is a greater amount of continuous preferred habitat for B. grafiana available west of the Connecticut River. Our analysis has identified river segments with suitable habitat for B. grafiana that have not yet been surveyed, which may be targeted for future survey efforts.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Westfield 350: Land Use and Population Changes in Westfield (MA) since 1669
AUTHORS: Nathan A Moreau, Westfield State University; Dr. Carsten Braun, Westfield State University.

ABSTRACT: Westfield 350 takes its inspiration from the book Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City by the landscape ecologist Eric W. Sanderson where he visualized and quantified the transition of the "Island of Many Hills" (or Mannahatta) to the modern urban metropolis of Manhattan. Here I present a similar GIS-based analysis and visualization for the city of Westfield (MA) and its surroundings based on a compilation of historical sources "anchored" onto a series of georeferenced historical maps beginning in 1792. My goal is to assess and map the settlement history and associated land use / land cover changes since the incorporation of Westfield on 19 May 1669. Westfield 350 will be shared with the public as an Esri Story Map as part of the 350th anniversary celebrations in 2019.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Where is the Home of the Homeless?
AUTHORS: Jeffrey Fontaine, Eastern Connecticut State University (Student)

ABSTRACT: Coming soon!

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Why can't we eat too? An assessment of food deserts within the city of Hartford, Connecticut
AUTHORS: Tyler Napper, Connecticut Department of Transportation, CT Transit

ABSTRACT: As of last year, at least 33 percent of the United States population has suffered from dwelling in areas known as food deserts. Unfortunately, the state capital of Connecticut has regions that are afflicted by food deserts. By 2020 Hartford’s population is expected to be 126,444, to which many restaurants and stores must accommodate, especially in the North End region of Hartford. Hartford may be the capital of the state of Connecticut with a 2017 revenue of $558,900,000 and an average household income of $32,095 but, in comparison to other towns throughout Connecticut it ranks significantly low regarding health, household income, education, and vehicle ownership. The assessment will determine how the factors listed above are correlated to the formation of the food deserts within the city of Hartford. The food desert assessment will identify the specific regions and demographics that are subjugated to food deserts by compiling and aggregating shapefile datasets from the years of 2016 to 2017; the coordinates which were represented as bus stops along with the linear network for every bus route within the metro area and, parcel/polygon data shall represent commercial, mixed-use, and residential zones; both the linear data and coordinates were geocoded and associated with polygon data that represents the target parcels/zones. The research conducted is intended to visualize the causation and consequence of food deserts within Hartford, Connecticut and, hopefully contribute to the end of food deserts within the state’s capital.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

8:00am

POSTER: Windmill Suitability Analysis of Boston's North Shore From a Planning Perspective
AUTHORS: David Heacock, Salem State University

ABSTRACT: Shifting away from fossil fuel to green energy sources has been an area of interest of Massachusetts towns for years, with the state's Clean Energy Center having earmarked millions of dollars to support commercial and institutional renewable energy development. Strong coastal winds make the region particularly eligible for wind power investment, however, many projects have folded because of various planning conflicts ranging from insufficient space for setback from nearby residences, to environmental concerns, and fear of indirect economic losses due to visual degradation of tourist areas. This study harnesses GIS as a tool to mitigate these conflicts in order to identify areas that are particularly suitable for windmills from a planning perspective. This is performed by creating buffer layers based on criteria from the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources, historic examples provided by area town planning directors, and industry guidelines, with an output categorized by wind speed as an added dimension. The study found the approach to be effective and had a high success rate in classifying existing windmills in its study area. The method shows promise as an alternative to the more common engineering approach to determining windmill suitability, and could be integrated to produce analyses that are more inclusionary of residential and municipal dynamics.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor