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Help Page

Table of Contents

Getting Started
The Map Panel
Map Tools
The Layer List
Displaying Biomass Markets/Service Providers
Selecting A New County/Air Basin/Air District
The Legend
Relevant Terms

Getting Starting

The first step is to choose an administrative boundary (a county, air basin or air district) of interest to you. The main web page returns with a map that shows your selected area of interest highlighted in yellow, and, if present, any biomass energy facilities and/or biomass markets/service providers located in the area.

Once you are inside the main web page you may change your area of interest at any time using the menu found at the bottom of the page (see "Selecting A New County/Air Basin/Air District").

You may also customize which biomass markets/service providers are displayed on the map. By default all biomass markets/service providers are displayed. See "Displaying Biomass Markets/Service Providers" for a detailed discussion of this functionality.




The Map Panel

The Map Panel is where the map image is displayed. The map is a "clickable" image, making it an interactive element of the map page. Using the Map Tools you can zoom in and out on the map, pan around the map, or retrieve information about map features.

The information displayed on the map is dependent on:

  • Which layers are "turned on" in the layer list and
  • the scale at which you are zoomed to.
  • As you zoom in on the map you will reveal more detail in the form of additional data. This is due to the presence of scale-dependent map layers. Often map layers that show a great amount of detail have pre-set scales at which they become visible. This is to prevent this data from obscuring the map at small scales. Use the zoom in tool to increase the scale of the map until these layers are visible.

    The map scale is displayed with a scale bar at the bottom left-hand corner of the map.

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    Map Tools

    The Map Tools perform a variety of functions, from navigation, to printing the map.

    Some Map tools, namely the Zoom tools, Pan tool, and Information tool, require interaction with the map panel following their selection. To select one of these tools click once on the tool icon. You will notice that a red box appears around the icon to indicate that it is the currently selected tool.

    The remaining map tools, the Zoom In/Out 20% buttons, Full Extent button, and the Print button do not require interaction with the map, only a single click on the tool icon.

    Zoom In
     

    The magnifying glass with the plus sign is used to zoom in on a specific point on the map. To use the tool, select the zoom in icon from the tool bar, select a zoom factor from the drop-down menu located below the map panel, then click on the map. The point on which you click becomes the center of magnification, and, subsequently, the center of the new map. By default, each click on the map with the zoom in tool increases the map scale by 50 percent (2x). You can control how much the scale increases by adjusting the zoom factor appropriately prior to using the zoom in tool.

     
     

    As you zoom in on the map you will reveal more detail in the form of additional data. This is due to the presence of 'scale-dependent' map layers. Often map layers that show a great amount of detail have pre-set scales at which they become visible. This is to prevent this data from obscuring the map at small scales.


    Zoom Out
     

    The magnifying glass with the minus sign is used to zoom out from a specific point on the map. To use the tool, select the zoom out icon from the map tool panel, select a zoom factor from the drop-down menu located below the map panel, then click the map. The point on which you click becomes the center of magnification, and, subsequently, the center of the new map. By default, each click on the map with the zoom out tool decreases the map scale by 50 percent. You can control how much the scale increases by adjusting the zoom factor appropriately prior to using the zoom out tool.

       
     

    As you zoom out, the map will display less detail as 'scale-dependent' layers turn off (see the Zoom In tool description for a more detailed discussion of scale-dependent layers).


    Zoom In 20%
      The 'Zoom In 20%' tool allows you to zoom in on the map in small, controlled increments. Click this button once to increase the map scale by 20 per cent. This tool does not require a map click.

    Zoom Out 20%
      The 'Zoom Out 20%' tool allows you to zoom out from the map in small, controlled increments. Click this button once to decrease the map scale by 20 per cent. This tool does not require a map click.

    Pan
      The hand is the pan tool. Panning is a useful function that allows you to move around the map without changing the scale. Think of it as shifting a paper map across a desktop in order to view a different portion of it. To use the pan tool select the pan icon from the map tool panel and then click once on the map. The new map image will be centered around the point of your map-click.

    Full Extent
      The full extent tool allows you to quickly zoom out to the map's maximum extent. To use the full extent function, simply click on the full extent icon. The full map area will be displayed in the map panel.

    Information
     

    The stylized "i" icon is the Information tool. This tool allows you to retrieve information about Biomass energy facilities, markets, and service providers in the State of California. There are 5 map layers from which you can retrieve information: Biomass Plants, Counties, Air Basins, Air Districts, and Cities/Towns.

    Biomass Plants

    Click on a biomass plant with the Information tool to retrieve the following information:

  • Plant Name
  • Primary Fuel Used
  • Technology Used
  • Online Power (Mega Watts)
  • Gross Power (Mega Watts)
  • Max. Power (Mega Watts)
  • Online Since Date
  • Operator/Owner


  • Counties, Air Basins, Air Districts, and Cities/Towns

    Click on a feature from any one of these four layers to retrieve information about the biomass energy facilities and biomass markets/service providers in that County, Air Basin, Air District, or City/Town.

      Biomass Energy Facilities
    • Company Name
    • Size (Mega Watts)
    • Annual Usage (Mega Watts)
    • City
    • County
    • Contact Information
    • Biomass Used


    • Biomass Markets/Service Providers
    • Company Name
    • Service
    • City
    • County
    • Contact Information
    • Biomass Used
    • Service Codes (Contractors only)


    Note: The information returned for Biomass Markets/Service Providers depends on which          markets/services you have selected via the "Biomass Markets/Service Providers"          checklist (see the "Displaying Biomass Markets/Service Providers" section below).

    Using the tool is a two-step process. The first step is to specify which layer you wish to retrieve information from. Below the map panel you will find a drop-down menu of eligible layers.

    Select a layer, then position your cursor on top of the feature you are interested in, and click with the left mouse button (Note: You cannot use the Information tool on market icons. To get information about the markets/service providers in a city, you must query the city itself).

    If a feature is found at the location of your map click then the results are returned in a seperate window in a format similar to that shown below:


    Print
      The print tool generates a print preview page that you can send to your local printer.

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    The Layer List

    The map displayed on this web site is composed of a number of stacked data "layers". A layer can be thought of as a collection of features with a common theme. For example, all of the State of California's major highways are contained on a single layer, as are the state's cities, major water bodies and so on.

    A list of the map layers (shown on the right) is located to the right of the map panel. Each layer has an associated "check box" which indicates the layer's visibility - layers with a checkmark are currently visible on the map. Check boxes can also be used to turn a layer's visibility on or off . To check, or un-check a box, simply click the box with your mouse pointer. To submit changes you have made to layer visibility click the "Refresh The Map" button found beneath the list. This functionality gives you the ability to customize the appearance of the map, displaying only the layers you want to see.

    At times the layer list will include layer names that have been "grayed-out". This indicates that the layer's visibility is controlled by scale-dependency. If a layer name has been grayed-out it means that you have either zoomed in beyond the layer's minimum scale threshold or you have zoomed out beyond the layer's maximum scale threshold. When the map scale returns to within the layer's upper and lower scale thresholds the layer name will no longer be grayed-out, and you will be able to control it's visibility via a check-box.

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    Displaying Biomass Markets/Service Providers

    The biomass markets mapping application allows you to display the location of, and retrieve information about four categories of biomass markets/service providers: Contractors, Firewood/Post/Hardwood Lumber producers, Landscapers, and Pulp/Particleboard producers. The contractor category has been further divided into a list of specific service types which can help you narrow your search for a service provider. You can access a list of biomass markets/service providers by clicking the large button labeled "Biomass Markets/Services", found on the bottom right of the web page.

    Each market and service has an associated check box. To display the location of a market or service provider simply check the box associated with that category and then refresh the map by clicking the "Refresh The Map" button located below the list. Following a map refresh, the map is redrawn with icons indicating the type, and location of the biomass markets/service providers you have selected. Note that the icons do not represent the exact geographic location of markets/service providers, rather, they indicate that a market is located in, or around, a given city or town.

    The icons shown here, for example, indicate that the city of Arcata has at least one contractor, firewood/post/ hardwood lumber producer, and pulp/particleboard producer. Eureka and Samoa each have a single biomass market/service provider.

    Biomass market icons are only displayed when:

  • At least 1 of the biomass market/service providers checkboxes is checked.
  • The "Cities/Towns" layer is both visible (i.e. checked in the layer list) and within scale-range.
  • The biomass market/services list also affects the results returned by the Information tool. When querying a city, county, air basin, or air district for a list of biomass markets/service providers, only those categories selected will be returned in the list.

    Note: You cannot use the Information tool on the market icons. To get information about the markets/service providers in a city, you must query the city itself.

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    Selecting An Area of Interest
    At the bottom of the web page you will find a drop-down menu containing a list of all 58 counties in the state of California, as well as the state's 15 recognized Air Basins, and 35 Air Districts. Each category is indicated by a heading.
     
    This menu allows you to quickly zoom to an area of interest to you. Selecting a county, air basin, or air district from the list automatically redraws the map to your chosen extent and highlights the boundaries of your area of interest.

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    The Legend
    To view a legend for the visible map layers click the "View The Legend" button, found to the right of the map. This spawns a new browser window containing the legend (pictured on right).

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    Relevant Terms
    This section provides definitions of some of the terms used in this application.

    Air Basins

    California is divided geographically into air basins for the purpose of managing the air resources of the State on a regional basis. Areas within each air basin are considered to share the same air masses and are therefore expected to have similar ambient air quality. The State is currently divided into 15 air basins.

    Air Districts

    The State is divided into Air Pollution Control Districts and Air Quality Management Districts, which are also called air districts. These agencies are county or regional governing authorities that have primary responsibility for controlling air pollution from stationary sources  The State is currently divided into 35 air districts.

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