TOOLS: Cartography of Pollution

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Science  24 Dec 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5705, pp. 2167
DOI: 10.1126/science.306.5705.2167c

Wondering which factories have trimmed their emissions of lead the most over the last decade? Want to find out how much benzene has been escaping from the refinery down the road? Visit TOXMAP, a new site from the National Library of Medicine that lets you chart values from the Environmental Protection Agency's Toxics Release Inventory. The annual report tallies U.S. emissions of some 650 hazardous chemicals into the air, water, and soil. Using TOXMAP, you can pinpoint pollution sources or map up to 15 years of data to identify emission trends. For example, this map (above) indicates release of formaldehyde in 2002, compared to the average for the years 1987–2001. The red triangles denote sources whose output climbed the most.

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