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Environmental Data Management (EDM): Best Practices for Exchanging Environmental Data

Live Webinar: Thursday, April 6, 2023, 1:00PM-2:30PM EDT (17:00-18:30 GMT)

Sponsored by: Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council

Register

The ITRC Environmental Data Management Best Practices Team (EDMBP Team) prepared a series of guidance documents and case studies on best practices for all phases of EDM to address the need for guidance on managing large stores of environmental data. Environmental data management (EDM) is a broad field that encompasses all aspects of environmental research and regulation, from habitat studies and wildlife management plans to health advisories and remediation of hazardous waste sites.

The EDMBP Team developed three Roundtable training sessions to support the Guidance Document and case studies. You are welcome to register for any of the three, but they do not build upon each other.

What good are data if you can't access it? At its root, data exchange is about making data accessible. It is the process of sharing data between systems. When it's done best, it is efficient, repeatable, and maintains the integrity of the data. At its worst, data are omitted, are mismatched, or there is no documentation on its origin. We think of data exchange in terms of incoming data and outgoing data. With incoming data, best practices span from inventorying sources to loading the data into a system. With outgoing data, best practices focus on documentation and automating exports into known schemas.

During this Roundtable training, we will tackle some of the challenging issues in data exchange. If you're new to data exchange, it may open your eyes. If you've been exchanging data for years, we hope to provide some new tricks or considerations for you. Some of the topics we'll cover include:
  • What's the best way to handle using several analytical laboratories, each with a different electronic data deliverable (EDD)?
  • When systems use different valid values and schema, how can you design an efficient, repeatable exchange?
  • How do we know that the costly effort to extract, transform, and load the data from old PDFs into our system will provide value?
  • If someone asks for "all the data" but doesn't have a plan for import to an existing system, how do you provide it in an understandable way in a raw format?
We want to answer your questions too. Are you wondering about how to handle analytes duplicated with multiple analytical methods? Or when you should automate or when to manually exchange? No question is too minor.

A photograph of Evan AnwayEvan Anway, Environmental Resources Management, Inc. (evan.anway@erm.com)
Mr. Anway is a data scientist with 6 years of consulting experience managing environmental databases and analyzing, modeling, and visualizing these data. He has migrated data, performed descriptive and inferential statistics, and developed applications for air quality, water elevation, and soil chemical concentration data.


A photograph of Michael GinsbachMichael Ginsbach, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (michael.ginsbach@state.mn.us)
Michael Ginsbach is a hydrogeologist in the Remediation division of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency with a decade of experience collecting and managing hydrologic, geologic, chemical, and geophysical data. In his current position, he manages the investigation and remediation of contaminated sites in Minnesota in addition to leading data improvement, migration, and implementation efforts for the MPCA. He has Bachelor of Science degree’s in earth science education and geology from North Dakota State University and a master of science in geology from Idaho State University.


A photograph of Dan McCarthyDan McCarthy, EarthSoft (dan.mccarthy@earthsoft.com)
Dan McCarthy is a Senior Account Manager at EarthSoft, with over 34 years of experience providing expertise in environmental data management. Twenty-eight years of that experience has been in environmental consulting focusing on information management related to site investigation, groundwater and soil remediation, reserves management, product stewardship and emergency response. Dan also participated in the ITRC Environmental Data Management (EDM) team through the Industry Affiliate Program and has assisted in development of training materials for the guidance documents prepared by the EDM team. Dan has a Bachelor of Arts in Geology from Franklin and Marshall College.


A photograph of Dreas NielsenDreas Nielsen, Integral Consulting, Inc. (dnielsen@integral-corp.com)
Dreas Nielsen is a senior science advisor at Integral Consulting Inc. in Seattle, WA. He specializes in quantitative analysis of environmental data, and throughout his 40-year professional career has developed specialized databases, software, standards, and procedures to support these analyses by establishing and maintaining the highest practicable level of data quality. He has performed and managed the collection and analysis of biological, physical, chemical, and geographic data from sites throughout the United States. He has developed operational practices for the acquisition, cleaning, standardization, and integration of data from both historical studies and present-day investigations. This includes the management of data transfers between public agencies, analytical laboratories, and other private environmental practitioners.


A photograph of Olga StewartOlga Stewart, Geosyntec Consultants (ostewart@geosyntec.com)
Olga Stewart has been managing field data for 15 years, developing solutions to streamline processes for data collection through reporting. She has prepared and used desktop and mobile tools, web-based and off-line tools, custom and off-the-shelf tools: whatever are the best tools for the project at the time. Olga has led several data migration efforts, often with digitizing hard copy and field-note based historical records. She has also developed several data exchange processes between field tools and reporting tools. Her focus is on making sure data are accessible and available for every data user; she interacts and plans with the entire team, from programmers and data managers to field techs and surveyors to modelers, analysts, and cartographers (and sometimes chemists). Olga works for Geosyntec Consultants in Anchorage, Alaska. She has a BS in Materials Science and Engineering and a BS in Integrated Business and Engineering from Lehigh University.


A photograph of Victoria (Tori) WardVictoria (Tori) Ward, Woodward & Curran (vward@woodwardcurran.com)
Victoria (Tori) Ward is a Project Engineer at Woodard & Curran with seven years of experience as a data manager/scientist. Her work focuses on leveraging scripting languages such as R and Python along with knowledge of database applications to improve project data management and analysis workflows. She earned a B.S. in Hydrology with a minor in French from the University of New Hampshire and an M.S. in Environmental and Water Resources Systems Engineering from Cornell University.


Moderator:

ITRC Training Program (itrc@itrcweb.org)


  • These materials will be available by Thursday, April 6, 2023

Webinar Slides and References:

  • These materials will be available by Thursday, April 6, 2023

Additional Resources:

Thank you for participating in our webinar. We would like to receive any feedback you might have that would make this service more valuable.

Looking ahead, how likely are you to use ITRC products?

I have already used them
I plan to use them within the next year
I will make a note for possible future use
it is unlikely I will refer to the guidance or tools

Did you think the training you took today should have...(select all that apply)

It was just right
It could have been longer
It could have been shorter
I would have liked more case studies
I would have liked more examples
other

If you answered "other"

Thinking about this training class

I am better prepared to use the products
This type of training is valuable to my organization
The presenters were effective
The training overall was effective for me
The training was not worth my time

What training format(s) do you prefer (select all that apply)

Online 1 to 2 hour sessions
Two live online 1 hour sessions
Recorded training I can watch, online, anytime
In-person training
Other

If you answered "other"

How did you find out about this course?

EPA's TechDirect e-mail
ITRC e-mail
ITRC Web site (www.itrcweb.org)
CLU-IN Web site (http://clu-in.org)
colleague
LinkedIn
Social Media
other

If you answered "other," how did you find out about this course?

What environmental topics are you interested in seeing ITRC develop guidance and training around?

Do you have any additional comments about this training or your need for additional training related to this topic?

Is there additional information you need on this course topic?


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Help & FAQs

Zoom Resources

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It is EPA's policy to make reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities wishing to participate in the agency's programs and activities, pursuant to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. 791. Any request for accommodation should be made to ITRC Training Program at 202-266-4932 or itrc@itrcweb.org, preferably one week or more in advance of the seminar, so that EPA will have sufficient time to process the request. EPA would welcome specific recommendations from requestors specifying the nature or type of accommodation needed. EPA welcomes specific recommendations from requestors specifying the nature or type of accommodation needed. Please note that CLU-IN provides both alternate phone call-in options and closed captioning for all webinars, and requests for these specific accommodations are not necessary.



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Rehabilitation Act Notice for Reasonable Accommodation

It is EPA's policy to make reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities wishing to participate in the agency's programs and activities, pursuant to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. 791. Any request for accommodation should be made to ITRC Training Program at 202-266-4932 or itrc@itrcweb.org, preferably one week or more in advance of the webinar, so that EPA will have sufficient time to process the request. EPA would welcome specific recommendations from requestors specifying the nature or type of accommodation needed. EPA welcomes specific recommendations from requestors specifying the nature or type of accommodation needed. Please note that CLU-IN provides both alternate phone call-in options and closed captioning for all webinars, and requests for these specific accommodations are not necessary.

Webinar Recording

By participating in this CLU-IN webinar, you automatically agree to authorize recording of audio and visual content presented during this live event and consent to subsequent use of this recording in the public domain by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This recording may include questions, comments and poll responses provided by you during the live event in addition to your name, voice, image or likeness. This recording will be made available after the conclusion of the live event as part of the CLU-IN webinar archives, and will remain available indefinitely. If you do not wish to consent to the recording, please do not join the live event, and contact Jean Balent at 202-566-0832 or balent.jean@epa.gov to discuss your concerns.

Content Disclaimer

This webinar is intended solely to provide information to the public. The views and opinions expressed as part of this webinar do not necessarily state or reflect those of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It is not intended, nor can it be relied upon, to create any rights enforceable by any party in litigation with the United States, or to endorse the use of products or services provided by specific vendors. With respect to this webinar, neither the United States Government nor any of their employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights.