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Subject Headings

The following descriptions taken from the GEOSS 10-Year Implementation Plan should be used to determine which subject area to place your practice in.

Societal Benefit Areas

Disasters: Reducing loss of life and property from natural and human-induced disasters

Disaster losses can be reduced through observations relating to hazards such as: wildland fires; volcanic eruptions; earthquakes; tsunamis; subsidence; landslides; avalanches; ice; floods; extreme weather; and pollution events. GEOSS implementation will bring a more timely dissemination of information through better coordinated systems for monitoring, predicting, risk assessment, early warning, mitigating, and responding to hazards at local, national, regional, and global levels.
Health: Understanding environmental factors affecting human health and well-being

Health issues with Earth observation  needs include: airborne, marine, and water pollution; stratospheric ozone depletion; persistent organic pollutants; nutrition; and monitoring weather-related disease vectors. GEOSS will improve the flow of appropriate environmental data and health statistics to the health community, promoting a focus on prevention and contributing to the continued improvements in human health worldwide.

Energy: Improving management of energy resources

GEOSS outcomes in the energy area will support: environmentally responsible and equitable energy management; better matching of supply and demand of energy; reduction of risks to energy infrastructure; more accurate inventories of greenhouse gases and pollutants; and a better understanding of renewable energy potential. Spooky Once Again, Don't erase mine and I won't erase yours!

Climate: Understanding, assessing, predicting, mitigating, and adapting to climate variability and change .

The climate has impacts in each of the other eight societal benefit areas. Coping with climate change and variability demands good scientific understanding based on sufficient and reliable observations . GEOSS outcomes will enhance the capacity to model, mitigate, and adapt to climate change and variability. Better understanding of the climate and its impacts on the Earth system, including its human and economic aspects like , will contribute to improved climate prediction and facilitate sustainable development while avoiding dangerous perturbation to the climate system.

Water: Improving water resource management through better understanding of the water cycle

Water-related issues addressed by GEOSS will include: precipitation; soil moisture; streamflow; lake and reservoir levels; snow cover; glaciers and ice; evaporation and transpiration; groundwater; and water quality and water use. GEOSS implementation will improve integrated water resource management by bringing together observations, prediction, and decision support systems and by creating better linkages to climate and other data. In situ networks and the automation of data collection will be consolidated, and the capacity to collect and use hydrological observations will be built where it is lacking

Weather: Improving weather information, forecasting and warning nursery rhymes

The weather observations encompassed by GEOSS are based on the requirements for timely short- and medium-term forecasts. GEOSS can help fill critical gaps in the observation of—for example—wind and humidity profiles, precipitation, and data collection over ocean areas; extend the use of dynamic sampling methods globally; improve the initialization of forecasts; and increase the capacity in developing countries to deliver essential observations and use forecast products. Every country will have the severe weather event information needed to mitigate loss of life and reduce property damage. Access to weather data for the other societal benefit areas will be facilitated.

Ecosystems: Improving the management and protection of terrestrial, coastal and marine resources

Observations are needed on the area, condition, and natural resource stock levels in ecosystems such as forests, rangelands, and oceans. GEOSS implementation will seek to ensure methodologies and observations are available on a global basis to detect and predict changes in ecosystem condition and to define resource potentials and limits. Ecosystem observations will be better harmonized and shared, spatial and topical gaps will be filled, and in situ data will be better integrated with space-based observations. Continuity of observations for monitoring wild fisheries, the carbon and nitrogen cycles, canopy properties, ocean color, and temperature will be set in place.

Agriculture: Supporting sustainable agriculture and combating desertification

Issues addressed by GEOSS will include: crop production; livestock, aquaculture and fishery statistics; food security and drought projections; nutrient balances; farming systems; land use and land cover change; and changes in the extent and severity of land degradation and desertification. GEOSS implementation will address the continuity of critical data, such as high-resolution observation data from satellites. A truly global mapping and information service, integrating spatially explicit socio-economic data with agricultural, forest, and aquaculture data will be feasible, with applications in poverty and food monitoring, international planning, and sustainable development.

Biodiversity: Understanding, monitoring and conserving biodiversity

Issues in this area include the condition and extent of ecosystems, distribution and status of species, and genetic diversity in key populations. Implementing GEOSS will unify many disparate biodiversityobserving systems and create a platform to integrate biodiversity data with other types of information. Taxonomic and spatial gaps will be filled, and the pace of information collection and dissemination will be increased.

Cross-Cutting Areas

Architecture and Data

The success of GEOSS will depend on data and information providers accepting and implementing a set of interoperability arrangements, including technical specifications for collecting, processing, storing, and disseminating shared data, metadata, and products. GEOSS interoperability will be based on non-proprietary standards, with preference to formal international standards. Interoperability will be focused on interfaces, defining only how system components interface with each other and thereby minimizing any impact on affected systems other than where such affected systems have interfaces to the shared architecture.

Capacity Building

The GEO capacity building strategy follows the World Summit on Sustainable Development concept of a global partnership between those whose capacity needs development and those who are able to assist in the process, recognizing that activities have intertwined social, environmental, and economic impacts.

Science and Technology

GEO will advocate research and development in key areas to facilitate, on an ongoing basis,improvements to Earth observation systems, including:

  • Improved and new instrumentation and system design for in situ, airborne, and space-based observation on a long-term basis;
  • Life-cycle data management, data integration and information fusion, data mining, network enhancement, and design optimization studies; and,
  • Development of models, data assimilation modules, and other algorithms that are able to produce global and regional products more effectively.

GEOSS implementation will promote research efforts that are necessary for the development of tools required in all societal benefit areas. It will also encourage and facilitate the transition from research to operations of appropriate systems and techniques. This includes facilitating partnerships between operational groups and research groups.

User Engagement

The benefits of GEOSS will be realized globally by a broad range of user communities, including managers and policy makers in the targeted societal benefit areas, scientific researchers and engineers, civil society, governmental and non-governmental organizations and international bodies, such as those assisting with the implementation of multilateral environmental agreements. Benefits from GEOSS.


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Posted 09:34, 11 Jun 2010 (9 years ago)
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