Mapping Grand Canyon for Conservation

Grand Canyon Trust Map of the Colorado River (2018 edition)


Friday, March 1, 2019


Memorial Union, Arizona Ballroom (Room 221)
301 E Orange St, Tempe, AZ 85281


Stephanie Smith

Presentation Abstract


In 1985, Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt and several others officially registered the Grand Canyon Trust as a non-profit organization dedicated to defending the natural integrity of the Grand Canyon. But the Trust realized early on that issues don’t stop at the boundaries of Grand Canyon National Park. So in 1987, we expanded the scope of our work to encompass the entire Colorado Plateau, of which the Grand Canyon stands as the centerpiece. GIS at the Trust helps tell the historic and current conservation story through advanced cartography, interactive web mapping, and spatial analysis. Using art and science, we design maps that illustrate physical characteristics, cultural values, proposals and conservation actions, and vulnerabilities across the Colorado Plateau. Our work reaches a broad audience including policy-makers, constituencies, government agencies, and our supporters. This presentation will highlight some of our most recent work in and around Grand Canyon, challenges we face as geographers, and how our maps have been used to further protect the Grand Canyon.