Maintaining environmental compliance requires an efficient way of managing data streams from various sources. EQuIS™ Enterprise dashboards compile all relevant environmental information into a single, up-to-date display allowing data managers to see the big picture at a glance while having access to more in-depth information as needed.
A well-designed dashboard has several benefits allowing environmental managers to stay in control of their environmental performance. The result is a better management of liabilities and an improved response time to evolving issues.
Ease of Use
EQuIS dashboards are easy to use and do not require intense training to be valuable and functional for the end users. Running on EQuIS Enterprise, dashboards are accessible with a username and password in any modern web browser without the need for a local installation. The intuitive web interface compiles complex datasets into easy to understand views with data visualizations that project teams are familiar. Environmental compliance requires companies to regularly monitor a range of parameters from various sources against values from site permits or environmental regulations. Examples include:
- Groundwater quality
- Surface water quality
- Soil and sediment contamination
- Ambient air quality
- Stack emissions
- Noise pollution
- Flow rates
- Waste management
- Greenhouse gases
In many cases, these datasets are collected, maintained, and reported by various subcontractors. The liabilities, however, remain with the operators who need an efficient way to check data against limits and report any exceedances. EQuIS provides a range of tools to identify values that are out of compliance and alert the responsible departments. Overview widgets provide an uncomplicated way of checking big datasets for any issues efficiently while more detailed views give clues about trends and locations that may need attention. For example, consider a coal power plant where the operator discharges cooling water into a river and is required to monitor water quantity and quality with various frequencies for different parameters. The environmental team can construct an EQuIS dashboard that displays all relevant parameters at a glance. The following samples of data visualizations can be included on the dashboards.
Fig. 1 A chart displaying the total number of exceedances by discharge point
Fig. 2 Charts to visualize results of a specific discharge point with matrix of points classified by compliant / non-compliant status.
Fig. 3Time series charts to visualize trends and identify exceedances.
EQuIS dashboards are highly flexible and configurable directly in the web interface. Various widget types, such as the ones above, can be arranged in dashboards to structure views based on the sites’ requirements. For example, while one site may require constant monitoring of trends, another site may need a more in-depth look at the spatial distribution of results. EQuIS Enterprise administrators set permissions based on user roles. Typical implementations include a handful of data managers who setup and maintain dashboards for a broader user base. These dashboards provide the end users with pre-defined views to monitor the relevant datasets. Dashboards can be structured in diverse ways to meet compliance needs. Possible implementations include:
- Separate dashboards for every site.
- Individual dashboards for different matrixes (e.g., Dashboard A for ground water, Dashboard B for surface water, etc.).
- Task-specific dashboards (e.g., Dashboard A to monitor incoming field data, Dashboard B to monitor laboratory data, and Dashboard C to upload new data).
- Based on site complexity (e.g., Dashboard A: Site overview, Dashboard B: Parameter values at discharge point B).
- Users decide how to organize their dashboard(s) to stay in control of their data and EQuIS provides the tools.
EQuIS provides the tools for end users to organize their dashboard(s) to stay in control of their data.
Relevance and Automation
Compliance dashboards rely on a solid EQuIS database foundation that constantly monitors, verifies, and processes incoming data. EQuIS Enterprise dashboards are built on the EQuIS Schema and provide workflow automation capabilities. Datasets from data providers are verified and loaded automatically to keep dashboards up-to-date, allowing environmental managers to easily review the most recent data. Some examples may include:
- Time series charts that automatically update with the most recent field or analytical results.
- Maps that automatically display the most recent water levels and automatically highlight out of range values.
- Reports that are generated automatically and sent by email to alert stakeholders of new analysis results.
Constructing dashboards with user defined widgets removes the manual data processing common with legacy systems. Adopting a solid data management system to digitize and automate common workflows increases data quality while reducing the costs for the data collection and analysis.