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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
US releases earth observation strategic plan
In April 2005, the White House released the Strategic Plan for the US Integrated Earth Observation System (IEOS) (2005, p. 149). The plan will serve as the framework for the US contribution to the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), an integrated observation system involving nearly 60 countries, which will be developed and implemented over ten years. GEOSS and IEOS will facilitate the sharing and applied usage of global, regional, and local data from satellites, ocean buoys, weather stations, and other surface and airborne Earth observing instruments. The end result will be access to an unprecedented amount of environmental information integrated into new data products benefiting societies and economies worldwide.
The US plan is focused on nine societal benefit areas: improve weather forecasting; reduce loss of life and property from disaster; protect and monitor the oceans; understand, assess, predict, mitigate, and adapt to climate variability and change; support sustainable agriculture and forestry and combat land degradation; understand the effect of environmental factors on human health and well-being; develop the capacity to make ecological forecasts; protect and monitor water resources; and monitor and manage energy resources.
The plan was developed by an interagency working group now formally recognized as the US Group on Earth Observation (US GEO), a standing subcommittee reporting to the National Science and Technology Council Committee on Environment and Natural Resources. US GEO will continue to develop implementation and integration plans for the US system and provide input into GEOSS’ implementation. For more information and a copy of the plan, visit: http://iwgeo.ssc.nasa.gov/.