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Virginia Tech designs emergency weather app to fight climate change

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BLACKSBURG (WSLS 10) - Virginia Tech researchers have designed with a new computer program to help in weather emergencies.

It is called the Population, Infrastructure and Exposures Visualizations App, or PIE Viz for short.

PIE Viz gives users information about extreme temperatures, power outages and pollutants in every county in the contiguous United States.

It also shows the number of people who are considered socially isolated, and therefore more vulnerable to these types of issues. Socially isolated refers to those who come into contact with few to no people on a typical day.

"It will really identify specific areas that are potentially more vulnerable," said Julia Gohlke, one of the app's designers. "There are never enough resources to go around. That's just a fact. So now we can really pinpoint and be more specific about those areas that we expect would need more resources."

PIE Viz took first prize in the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences' Climate Change and Environmental Exposures Challenge.

The research team is hoping to receive funding soon to make the site mobile friendly.