In the wake of the earthquake that devastated Haiti, UB
geography students participated in a global effort to enhance the
international response and recovery effort.
Eight graduate and undergraduate students conducted the research
under the director of Chris Renschler, associate professor of
geography, in his Landscape-based Environmental Systems Analysis
and Modeling Laboratory. The students assessed damage using images
hosted by Google Earth and the Virtual Disaster Viewer, which
shares on the Internet imagery of disasters from various sources.
Within two weeks, more than 10,000 buildings were identified as
either totally destroyed or heavily damaged. The
Internet-based images were used by the World Bank to help create a
picture of reconstruction and recovery needs.