Vestra is a GIS, environmental solutions, and engineering consulting service based in California that provides its client with in-depth knowledge and expertise on how to deal with environmental and social issues and achieve success. The company was started in 1988 after the founders learned about using GIS while working in timber management, and were in interested in applying this new technology to other sectors. Vestra was one of the first firms to extensively use and consult clients on GIS software, and they have only expanded and improved their capabilities from then on.
They work with clients on a variety of projects. Notably, they are involved with the California Department of Water Resources, where they working on geospatial technical support to aid in the drought crisis, particularly through the targeting of disadvantaged communities. They aid clients in receiving permits and meeting standards under the California Environmental Quality Act, coordinating with agencies such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to ensure that environmental and conservation regulations are adhered to during both clean-up and construction projects.
They’ve supported the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development through the development of a Healthcare Atlas, which uses GIS to analyze areas of highest health concern to inform policy and direct funding efficiently and effectively. Their advanced mapping tools can also be used to collect live earthquake data, which can be sent directly to emergency service providers to ensure speedy response. They’ve been involved in the mitigation of other natural disasters as well, such as wildfire response aid through GIS and mapping technology.
Written by: Christopher Ewell, AGS Intern on June 17, 2015