UK Space Agency to lead international collaboration to provide space data for emergency response

October 20, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by P.J. Blount with the blog faculty

Source the UK Space Agency:

UK Space Agency to lead international collaboration to provide space data for emergency response

As countries around the world celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Charter (International Charter: Space and Major Disasters) the UK has confirmed that it will chair this important collaboration from April 2011. The Charter is an international effort to task Earth Observation (EO) satellites quickly to provide data following a major disaster.

Over the last few years, the Charter has continued to demonstrate the importance of space in helping to optimise the capacity of relief organisations that deal with natural and technological hazards and is increasingly recognised as the best model for providing EO data in an emergency. This is reflected by its growing membership, with Russia, Brazil, Germany and South Korea in the process of joining the Charter.

In recent months the Charter was activated to help the clean up effort after the BP oil spill, to support emergency workers during the flooding in Pakistan, and in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti. Between its operational start-up in November 2000 and 19 October 2010, the Charter has been activated 280 times, and already 39 times since the beginning of 2010.

The UK-built Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC) is a key member of the Charter and its five satellites, built by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd, are owned individually by Algeria, China, Nigeria, Turkey and the UK.

The 10th anniversary ceremony is taking place today (Tuesday 19 October) at ESA’s Headquarters in Paris.

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