Sustainable Practice

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The lead feature in this issue pertains to GIS, but as you know, without adequate control, GIS is just a cartoon, so it behooves us to stay up to date on our portion of that discipline. As we know, individual trees are an important part of our discipline, but forests are an important part of our world. As our world warms, we see the results of improperly managed forests and the resultant fires, so it’s important that we use all the tools at our disposal to protect them in a sustainable way.

Continuing with that theme, an Australian surveyor relates how he is using GNSS to strike a balance between land development and the preservation of our heritage. As surveyors we depend on development to provide us with work, but as the author points out, both are not only possible, but critical. Incidentally, for those of you who don’t work in cities, the tool he uses allows him to work in remote places.

Also continuing with the theme, the CEO of an Australian company discusses how drone technology can be used in sustainable construction. Over the years I’ve had anti-development types criticize me for playing a part as a surveyor. I always inform them that the #1 reason why most folks go into surveying is to work outdoors, and why would we want to do anything that would harm our environment? This would be like defecating in our own living room!

Speaking of emerging technology, Joe Fenicle relates his experiences in using ground penetrating radar at the annual Surveyors Rendezvous. Due to excessive moisture in the soil the results were inconclusive, but the survey program Joe runs at the University of Akron will continue its investigation of the use of GPR so look for future articles about the subject.

Brian Fisher provides an in-depth look at the latest offerings from JAVAD GNSS. Brian cut his GPS teeth on Ashtech equipment, so he has closely followed the work of the late Javad Ashjaee. The company continues its development work and has made several recent hires. We will continue to follow the company as it charts its path into the future.

Wendy Lathrop provides a look at a New Jersey sand and gravel company who almost got away with claiming adverse possession against the state. Common knowledge says adverse possession can’t be used against government property, but Wendy has provided at least one instance where it has. As surveyors it is our responsibility to stay current on the law and over the years Wendy has done an excellent job of sharing legal issues that pertain to land development.

Finally, Dave Lindell provides us with another Test Yourself. See if you can work the problem! The answers to all Dave’s problems can be found on our website.

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About the Author

Marc Cheves, PS

Marc Cheves is editor emeritus of the magazine. He has been a surveyor since 1963 and is licensed in five states. Since 1995 he has been a surveying magazine editor.