The Michigan Sensitive Areas Identification System (SAIS) is an online mapping and reporting tool that assists producers in identifying ecologically sensitive areas that may be prone to soil erosion by wind or water, leaching of nutrients, or other risk factors. In about five minutes, a printable report can be created that includes results for the Manure Application Risk Index and Michigan Phosphorus Risk Assessment, several maps displaying sensitive area information, and a list of potential practices that could be implemented. The goal of the system is to improve natural resources by connecting producers with local conservation staff and available assistance programs.
Laura Young, Michigan State University Institute of Water Research
Laura contributes significantly to a number of outreach initiatives at the Michigan State University Institute of Water Research. She conducts trainings and provides user support for various online tools developed at the Institute, including the Great Lakes Watershed Management System and the Sensitive Areas Identification System. She also assists with software testing and user evaluations. Her research interests include evaluating outcomes from environmental decision support systems and assessing strategies for technology transfer and diffusion.
Jason Piwarski, Michigan State University Institute of Water Research
Jason's primary work at the Institute of Water Research has been the development of online GIS applications, such as the Mid-Michigan Health Impact Assessment Tool, to help with ensuring sustainable decision-making at local and regional levels. He also has worked on the development of the Great Lakes Clean Communities Network and conducted hydrologic modeling in southwestern Michigan using the USGS's AFINCH model. He completed both his B.S. in Geographic Information Science (2011) and M.S. in Geographic Information Science (2014) at Michigan State University. When not thinking about GIS applications, Jason enjoys cycling, reading, and fishing.