What is MapCruzin? Simply put, our mission is to provide the information, tools, resources and expertise to enhance personal growth and knowledge and empower you in your efforts towards improving environmental and social conditions.
We also assist tribes, governments, community groups, students, educators and businesses in their efforts to do research, analyze and to communicate the various facets of environmental health and social problems, solutions, and achievements.
It is our goal to enrich community awareness, to help promote environmental justice and to aid in facilitating networking that will ultimately result in:
- Increased awareness of the negative impacts on human and ecosystem
health of resource exhaustion, pollution, radiation, biodiversity loss, and poorly planned development.
- Healthy local and bioregional economies that use local renewable resources in new and
innovative ways for the production of goods in such a way that
they satisfy local needs and restore, rather than degrade the
- Sustainable vibrant communities that provide decent, affordable shelter, cultural
respect, safety and health, justice and meaningful work for all.
Our hope is that we will help speed you on your journey of re-imagining our relationships with each other and the earth.
What We Do
For several years we have performed environmental and sociodemographic research, GIS analysis, and developed WebMap projects for non-profit environmental organizations. In 1996 we launched our Santa Cruz Toxics Release Inventory -- the first U.S. pollution maps on the internet. This led to our work on EDF's Chemical Scorecard (we created the maps locating 1995 and 1996 TRI facilities) and other projects.
Though this is important work, it is not enough if we are to find real and lasting solutions to our environmental and social problems. In the 21st century we must create Communities of Knowledge -- partnerships between ALL stakeholders that have their foundation in the grassroots. These partnerships will result in proactive environmental and social responsibility, accountability, problem-solving, participation, justice, public disclosure and outreach.
In the spirit of community and justice, we have three goals:
- The first is to work with community groups, universities, businesses, and local governments to create and achieve community-based environmental and social goals.
- The second is to help communicate
these goals, solutions, achievements, problems and failures in such a way that they educate, raise community awareness, and facilitate networking, problem-solving, and democratic participation.
- The third is to be an advocate for right-to-know. Right-to-know (full public access to environmental and social data and information) is central to first knowing about and then improving environmental and social conditions. Many industries have fought against our right-to-know and they have found a new and willing partner in the post-911 Bush administration. We all must be vigilant in fighting off these assaults, protecting what we have and working towards more openness, more accountability, more disclosure -- MORE RIGHT-TO-KNOW.