EIA's portal compares energy in the 50 states from EcoWest on Vimeo.

EIA’s portal compares energy sector in 50 states

If you’ve ever been curious about energy facts in your state—such as which sector consumes the most energy, or how your state’s electricity prices compare to the rest of the country—the State Portal hosted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is a convenient, user-friendly resource. EIA’s portal compares energy in the 50 states from […]

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Deep brain freeze: visualizing the polar vortex

For the second afternoon in a row, a potent cold front has swept across Denver, marking the return of a deep freeze for much of the country. Yesterday, my weather station recorded a 32-degree drop in less than 90 minutes (here’s a chart). This latest cold snap is sure to revive talk about the polar […]

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Climate change and trends in the American West’s snowpack

Like anglers who can dutifully pinpoint the location of hotspots, winter sports enthusiasts know when and where to find the best snow. When conditions change in the slightest—whether in temperature, base depth, or type of snow—devotees take note. But it can be hard to tell whether conditions on the local slopes in a given season […]

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How energy is produced in the American West, the nation’s “energy breadbasket”

The Western Governors’ Association (WGA) calls the West the nation’s “energy breadbasket,” owing to the region’s vast and diverse energy resources. In its most recent report, “The State of Energy in the West,” the WGA provides a comprehensive survey of conventional and renewable energy as part of its year-long focus on energy. In a previous […]

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Biodiversity

Video: mountain species, climate change, and the escalator effect

Video: mountain species, climate change, and the escalator effect

Mountains are especially vulnerable to climate change, so scientists are keeping a close watch on species such as the American pika (Ochotona princeps). This small mammal, which resembles a hamster and is a relative of the rabbit, lives in alpine and subalpine terrain across Western North America. Although relatively widespread and usually found in protected […]

Sep 24, 2013 12:00

Data visualization

Deep brain freeze: visualizing the polar vortex

Deep brain freeze: visualizing the polar vortex

For the second afternoon in a row, a potent cold front has swept across Denver, marking the return of a deep freeze for much of the country. Yesterday, my weather station recorded a 32-degree drop in less than 90 minutes (here’s a chart). This latest cold snap is sure to revive talk about the polar […]

Feb 25, 2014 19:14

Energy

EIA’s portal compares energy sector in 50 states

EIA’s portal compares energy sector in 50 states

If you’ve ever been curious about energy facts in your state—such as which sector consumes the most energy, or how your state’s electricity prices compare to the rest of the country—the State Portal hosted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is a convenient, user-friendly resource. EIA’s portal compares energy in the 50 states from […]

Mar 4, 2014 10:35

Public opinion

Annual Western poll shows strong support for conservation

Annual Western poll shows strong support for conservation

For the past few years, Colorado College’s State of the Rockies Project has been conducting a Conservation in the West poll, and the results continually show strong support for protecting the West’s environment. When voters in six states are asked about issues such as energy development, safety regulations, and public lands, they tend to prefer […]

Aug 13, 2013 8:50

Recent Articles

EIA’s portal compares energy sector in 50 states

EIA’s portal compares energy sector in 50 states

If you’ve ever been curious about energy facts in your state—such as which sector consumes the most energy, or how your state’s electricity prices compare to the rest of the country—the State Portal hosted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is a convenient, user-friendly resource. EIA’s portal compares energy in the 50 states from […]

Deep brain freeze: visualizing the polar vortex

Deep brain freeze: visualizing the polar vortex

For the second afternoon in a row, a potent cold front has swept across Denver, marking the return of a deep freeze for much of the country. Yesterday, my weather station recorded a 32-degree drop in less than 90 minutes (here’s a chart). This latest cold snap is sure to revive talk about the polar […]

Climate change and trends in the American West’s snowpack

Climate change and trends in the American West’s snowpack

Like anglers who can dutifully pinpoint the location of hotspots, winter sports enthusiasts know when and where to find the best snow. When conditions change in the slightest—whether in temperature, base depth, or type of snow—devotees take note. But it can be hard to tell whether conditions on the local slopes in a given season […]

How energy is produced in the American West, the nation’s “energy breadbasket”

How energy is produced in the American West, the nation’s “energy breadbasket”

The Western Governors’ Association (WGA) calls the West the nation’s “energy breadbasket,” owing to the region’s vast and diverse energy resources. In its most recent report, “The State of Energy in the West,” the WGA provides a comprehensive survey of conventional and renewable energy as part of its year-long focus on energy. In a previous […]

Snow jobs: America’s $12 billion winter sports economy and climate change

Snow jobs: America’s $12 billion winter sports economy and climate change

Full disclosure: I love to ski and snowboard, so before reading further, you should know that I’m more of a passionate participant than neutral analyst of America’s snow sports industry. But whether you’re a ski bum, X Games aspirant, or disinterested flatlander, it’s undeniable that a ton of money is changing hands when it comes […]

LandScope America: a tool to visualize land conservation

LandScope America: a tool to visualize land conservation

If you want to visualize your favorite wilderness area or map the protected areas in your city, LandScope America provides a free and convenient resource. This user-friendly GIS tool, a collaborative project of NatureServe and the National Geographic Society, lets you explore protected lands across the country, create maps of conservation projects, and share your […]

2013 wildfire season way below average

2013 wildfire season way below average

Wildfires were thrust into the national spotlight twice this year, first when 19 firefighters died in Arizona on June 30, and again in August, when the 257,314-acre Rim Fire burned in and around Yosemite National Park. But if you look at the federal government’s statistics, 2013 is on track to be one of the quietest […]

Q&A: Financing land conservation in the West

Q&A: Financing land conservation in the West

EcoWest recently had an opportunity to speak with Dee Frankfourth, Associate National Conservation Finance Director at The Trust for Public Land (TPL) and Eleanor Morris, Senior Policy Representative at The Nature Conservancy (TNC). We interviewed Frankfourth and Morris about trends they are observing in their conservation finance work to protect open space across the West. […]

Trulia’s mapping tool goes far beyond real estate

Trulia’s mapping tool goes far beyond real estate

You may quibble with how Trulia values your home, but the real estate website provides an impressive interactive map with detailed views of social and environmental variables. In addition to offering a treasure trove of information on real estate down to the parcel level, Trulia’s mapping engine also visualizes high-resolution data on things like commute […]

Our SXSW Eco presentation and the PowerPoint paradox

Our SXSW Eco presentation and the PowerPoint paradox

I was in Austin last week, speaking at the annual SXSW Eco conference, so I wanted to share my presentation and a lesson or two I learned about PowerPoint. The presenter’s job is becoming even more difficult in a harried era of micro attention spans. With audience members carrying multiple Internet-enabled devices at all times, […]

Drop on the planet: 3 visualizations of Earth’s most precious natural resource

Drop on the planet: 3 visualizations of Earth’s most precious natural resource

Scarcity of freshwater is a defining feature of the American West, and planet Earth. Nearly 97% of the world’s H2O is in the oceans. More than two-thirds of the globe’s freshwater is frozen in glaciers and polar ice caps. Below are a trio of graphics to visualize water on Earth. I’ve found these slides useful […]

Up in smoke: federal wildfire suppression costs are rising

Up in smoke: federal wildfire suppression costs are rising

Federal spending to fight wildfires is trending higher. Not only is the overall, inflation-adjusted cost increasing, but the federal cost per wildfire and per acre burned are also on the upswing. Before the federal shutdown turned government websites into virtual ghost towns, I was snooping around the National Interagency Fire Center’s site, and I came […]