Iceland Nature Portal

natturuvefsja_skjamyndThe Iceland Nature Portal (INP), which was launched online in October 2008, was a system for entering, maintaining and disseminating data about the nature of Iceland. The INP contained a wide variety of data from diverse sources relating to the essence of Icelandic nature on land, at sea and in fresh water, all accessible in the same Web Portal. Preparatory work for the INP was funded by Rannís, the Icelandic Centre for Research, but the cost of the project itself was divided equally between the Icelandic Project on the Information Society and the NEA. Project partners were several institutes working in cooperation with the digital design company Gagarín, which developed the software. Custodianship of the INP accompanied Hydrological Services when it was transferred from the NEA to the Icelandic Meteorological Office in the beginning of 2009.

Primary Objectives of the Iceland Nature Portal

  • To present and share data and research results on a collective platform.
  • To develop a user-friendly multimedia environment in Icelandic that provides a diverse range of possibilities for examining multiple types of data simultaneously.
  • To improve greatly accessibility to data on natural conditions and resources, which provides the opportunity to convey data that otherwise would not be available to users.
  • To create a platform for scientists to submit the conclusions of their research projects.

  • To make the work of public institutes more visible, including those that lack expertise in the field of geographical information systems, as such efforts can preserve data.

  • To expand possibilities for the public and students to examine information about natural conditions and resources.

  • To be a platform for sharing and joint use of data, implementing standards, coordinating work procedures and configuring data on the internet.

Software

The digital design company Gagarín developed software (Flashmap) for the project, with an emphasis on creating a user-friendly environment to simplify entering and conveying standardized data.  It was possible to enter and view different types of data, including points, lines, polygons, remote sensing data (satellite images and aerial photographs) and temporally variable geographical information such as maps of weather and hydrological conditions. Moreover, the INP is designed to make it possible to enter and disseminate information associated with datasets, e.g. metadata, general and detailed information, links and photographs. The data is displayed in the ÍSN93 coordinate system.

Data

The following institutes participated in preparatory work for the INP: Iceland GeoSurvey (ÍSOR), Agricultural University of Iceland, National Land Survey of Iceland, Institute of Biology at the University of Iceland, Icelandic Institute of Natural History, the National Energy Authority, Environment Agency of Iceland, Icelandic Meteorological Office and the Institute of Freshwater Fisheries. Most of these institutes provided some data in some form, either publication-ready or in various stages of development, which was published in the Portal.