October 2, 2001 FGDC Coordination Meeting Summary

Action items requiring quick response.

Action: Please send comments regarding the proposed Standard for a U.S. National Grid to Julie Binder Maitra by October 9 (jmaitra@fgdc.gov).

Action: Subcommittee and Working Group Chairs should send Alison Kiernan (akiernan@fgdc.gov) a current membership list of your members (including phone and fax numbers, snail mail and email addresses) no later than October 12.

Host: Timi Vann, NASA

John Moeller, FGDC
Alison Kiernan, FGDC
Scott McAfee, FEMA
Bill Belton, USDA/FS
Betsy Banas, USDA/FS
Beth Lachman, RAND
Ram Fromhertz, NOAA, NGS
Kija Kim, HDM
Julie Binder Maitra, FGDC
Ron Birk, NASA
Ronald Matzner, FGDC
Tom Terry, XY Project
Jules McNeff, USGPS Industry Council
Hedy Rossmeissl, USGS
Tom Conry, Fairfax County, VA
Alison Hill, USDA/FS
Michael Domaratz, USGS
Mike Buckley, FEMA
Susan Hargrove, DOE
Jason G. Racette, BLM
Bruce Ambacher, NARA
Nancy Blyer, USACE
Ivan DeLoatch, EPA
Chuck Croner, CDC/DHHS
Milo Robinson, FGDC
Tom Usselman, STIA
Howard Diamond, NOAA
Charles Roswell, NIMA
Fred Broome, Census
David Painter, FGDC
David Stein, NOAA CSC
Carol Brandt, USDOT/BTS
Jon Sperling, HUD
Rick Yorczyk, NOAA/FGCS
Christine Clarke, NRCS
Jim Aylward, HDM
Al Stevens, FGDC
John Blumenthal, BLS
Jerry McFaul, USGS
Leslie Wollack, NSGIC
Tony Frater, OMB
Rick Clayton, BLS
Marge Cole, NASA
William Burgess, MD NDR/NSGIC
Michelle Torreano, EPA
Phil Thiel, Dewberry & Davis

The NSDI and Homeland Security - John Moeller, FGDC Staff Director

Benefits of the NSDI listed in the Circular A-16 Revision include: a more secure Nation, homeland defense, protection planning, and a means to a well coordinated response to nuclear, chemical, and biological incidents or natural disasters. Shared information and collaboration are needed to combat terrorism. Homeland Security requires good, integrated geographic information.

The NSDI and Homeland Security

Lessons from September 11:

  • Security requires immediately available information.
  • Threats may come from widely dispersed locations.
  • Geographic information and GIS are critical.
  • All levels of government and sectors must work together to combat terrorism.
  • Information needs may vary greatly by theme and scale depending on circumstances.
  • Physical infrastructure both above and below ground are crucial.

NSDI Metadata Standards, Clearinghouse search capability and Framework serve a valuable role in homeland security. It is crucial that we complete Framework Standards, document and make available data, incorporate NSDI practices in Agency programs, and provide leadership for Agency NSDI responsibilities. It is important that the FGDC members realize that they are working together to do something important for our Nation.

Suggestions provided by David Morehouse (DOE) include:

  • Create a Homeland Security GIS Working Group to determine the status of homeland defense-related GIS efforts; develop a architecture of software, communications, content and base layers; and coordinate funding, construction and maintenance of homeland defense.
  • Assign FGDC Secretariat Staff Person to coordinate the proposed Working Group.
  • Brief the Director of the new Office of Homeland Security.

    Action: FGDC will establish a Homeland Security Working Group (consisting of DOE, FEMA, NOAA, EPA, NASA and other interested agencies).

U.S. National Grid - Julie Binder Maitra, FGDC Standards Coordinator

The Standard for a U.S. National Grid can be used to promote homeland security and is supported by FEMA. Features of U.S. National Grid include: Defined by UTM coordinate representation, Military Grid Reference System (MGRS) grid designators, and grid presentation requirements; Non-proprietary and publicly available; Nationwide in scope; Provides a system of truncating digits for variable precision to accommodate multiple scales. The grid is easy to use, just read right and then up. The Department of Justice and the Office of Law Enforcement Standards, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have shown significant interest in this standard. The State of Utah is implementing the U.S. National Grid in their State GIS system consolidate emergency management during the upcoming Olympics.

The Standard for a U.S. National Grid has completed public review. The post-public review draft has been released to the FGDC Standards Working Group for review. On October 10, the Standards Working Group will vote on recommendation of the Standard for a U.S. National Grid for Coordination Group for FGDC endorsement.

Action: Please send comments regarding the proposed Standard for a U.S. National Grid to Julie Binder Maitra by October 9 (jmaitra@fgdc.gov).

Action: Standards Working Group members should attend the upcoming Standards Working Group meeting to vote on the proposed U.S. National Grid (9 a.m., October 10, USGS, Room 2D-308).

Bureau of Labor Statistics - Geocoding the Business List - Rick Clayton, BLS

The ES-202 Employment and Wages Program data consists of 8 million quarterly business reports that list units, employment, wages, industry and geographic detail. This information is useful in benchmarking and sampling. The data has many different uses: analytical (local government services planning, industrial clustering, etc.), economic (State revenue projections, industrial analysis, etc.), and programmatic (local area unemployment, mass layoff statistics, etc). Geocoded physical location addresses can be used in local transportation planning, crime planning, environmental assessments, disaster planning, land use, and homeland defense.

Bureau of Labor Statistics (1.17 MB PPT)

Action: Department of Labor/ Bureau of Labor Statistics will request FGDC membership.

Action: Those interested in the Geocoding project should please contact Rick Clayton (clayton_r@bls.gov).

NASA Framework & Strategic Plan - Ron Birk, NASA.

NASA's Earth Science Enterprise (ESE) is dedicated to understanding the total Earth system and the effects of humans on the global environment and to enable improved prediction of climate, weather, and natural hazards for present and future generations. The aim of ESE is to build and extend knowledge, provide systems engineering, enter partnerships with the community and identify technical and remote sensing solutions. The science goals are focused on weather, climate and natural hazards. Improved weather forecasts will provide many benefits, including decreased costs of electricity. Sustainable growth applications are being developed for agriculture, coastal management, and energy. Aviation safety is another focus of ESE - a synthetic vision system is being developed that could save money and provide unlimited capacity. Related projects are digital terrain and atmospheric models. NASA has agreements with many agencies, including: USDA, FEMA, USGS, NOAA, and NIMA. The presentation is very large and due to difficulty of transmitting it by email is not included, but it is available from Ron Birk at rbirk@hq.nasa.gov.

Action: Please provide feedback regarding the Earth Science Enterprise to Ron Birk (rbirk@hq.nasa.gov).

Imagery & Remote Sensing Task Force Update - Ron Birk, NASA.

Background: After receiving NIMA's Commercial Imagery Strategy, OMB and OSTP requested the Civil Agency imagery needs and extended and invitation to FGDC to provide a Civil Agency response to the NIMA proposal. An Imagery & Remote Sensing Task Force was created to create an overview to OMB and OSTP detailing the value of imagery and remote sensing used by Federal agencies. The new Task Force has representatives from 15 agencies and is co-chaired by Ron Birk (NASA) and Greg Snyder (USGS).

Action: Please send Ron Birk (rbirk@hq.nasa.gov) specific anecdotal examples that show the value of imagery and remote sensing (for example, at the local level).

Standards Development Proposal - John Moeller, FGDC

A key building block of NSDI, The Framework consists of Cadastral, Geodetic Control, Digital Orthoimagery, Elevation, Transportation, Governmental Units, and Hydrography Data Themes. However, the standards for the Framework Themes are in various stages of completion, do not include consistent data modeling techniques and most are not focused on Framework. How will we move forward to get this suite of Framework Standards in place?

A data model in a common modeling language would facilitate exchange of common data packages. It is requested that a collaborative coordinated effort be put forth to have a suite of approved Framework Standards ready within 12 - 15 months, including a reference model for standard implementation. This could be achieved with the help of a Standards Development Manager, a Data Modeler, a Facilitator, and outreach for community-wide participation. The process for each standard would include the development of a working draft, community review, and consensus building - with the consensus leading to the Subcommittee Draft Standard. The seven unified Framework Standards would build on existing work, pooling community capability and resources.

There was general agreement among the Coordination Group members that the Framework Content Standards must be completed. It was also acknowledged that a Standards Development Manager would be crucial in providing day-to-day guidance on these themes.

Standards Development Proposal (35.5 KB PPT)

Action: Please contact John Moeller with comments on the Standards Development Proposal (jmoeller@fgdc.gov).

Annual Spatial Data Report - Alison Kiernan, FGDC.

The FGDC received Annual Spatial Data Reports from 11 Subcommittees, 9 Working Groups, and 12 FGDC member agencies. These reports provide valuable insight into the activities of these groups and agencies. One finding of the reports: although 100% of Subcommittees have collaborative partnerships, only 55% of them have a policy in place for full and open access or data sharing. The agency reports are available at: http://www.fgdc.gov/01_nsdi_reports/. The information from the reports was entered into matrices and then distilled into a page-long summary. A summary report is being written.

Action: The Annual Spatial Data summary report will be sent to Coordination Group members for their review and then will be sent to OMB by October 19.

2001 National GeoData Forum - John Moeller, FGDC.

John Moeller encouraged Coordination Group members to attend the upcoming 2001 National GeoData Forum. The conference will be held in Denver from November 1-3. John passed out an article in the September edition of Earth Observation Magazine (EOM) describing the GeoData Alliance and the upcoming GeoData Forum. The EOM article is available at the following site: http://www.eomonline.com/Common/currentissues/Sept01/editorial.htm

Updated Subcommittee and Working Group Membership Lists - Alison Kiernan

Action: Subcommittee and Working Group Chairs should send Alison Kiernan (akiernan@fgdc.gov) a current membership list of your members (including phone and fax numbers, snail mail and email addresses) no later than October 12.

Next Coordination Group Meeting

Date: November 6, 2001
Site: NRCS (location info will follow)
Possible Agenda Topics:

  • NRCS GPRA Strategic Plan
  • U.S. National Grid
  • Homeland Security
  • Framework Standards
  • NSDI Procurement Language
  • MSC Partnership

Please submit agenda suggestions to Alison Kiernan (akiernan@fgdc.gov).

An agenda will be forwarded in mid October.