GEOG 469
Energy Industry Applications of GIS

Lesson 8 - Finding GIS Data for Siting Projects


An Overview of Lesson 8

Where do we find data for our GIS applications? This lesson will focus on the data sources needed to conduct GIS analysis for siting of electric transmission lines. Data is available from many sources including federal, state, and local government data, open source data, free data made available by private companies, and fee-based data sources. Though data is available from these sources, it may not be easy to find or the data quality may not be appropriate for use in a particular siting project. We will explore data sources in the public domain, what types of data are available and how to obtain this data for use in GIS applications. You will apply what you learn about metadata in Lesson 7 to determine data type, coordinate system used, scale, accuracy and source of the data.

What will we learn in Lesson 8?

The goal of this lesson is to give you practical experience finding and downloading data specific to evaluating the environmental components of the transmission line siting process. By the time you complete this lesson, you should be able to:

  • identify the types of data that are available;
  • identify sources for this information;
  • access and download this data; and
  • determine data quality from reviewing metadata.

What is due for Lesson 8?

This lesson will take us one week to complete. Please refer to the Calendar in Canvas for specific time frames and due dates. Specific directions for the assignment below can be found within this lesson.

  • a spreadsheet showing your sources of data


If you have any questions, please post them to our Questions?  discussion forum in Canvas. I will check that discussion forum daily to respond. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help out a classmate.