Satellites contributing data imagery to the GEOSS vision.

Satellites contributing data imagery to the GEOSS vision.

Deniers of world climate science were nowhere to be seen in Geneva last week, when the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) launched its second decade of co-ordinating the global Earth observation system of systems (GEOSS).

Several hundred senior government science officials and ministers celebrated GEOSS advances since GEO was established by the Group of Eight major nations in 2005. They also debated next challenges for the 90 nations and 77 organisations participating in the shared vision to co-ordinate free and open international access to taxpayer-funded satellite data and imagery – the basic content needed to develop viable solutions for major world social and environmental challenges.

GEO’s current projects include monitoring agricultural crops (GEOGLAM), improving forest management (GFOI), strengthening hazard assessments (Geohazard Supersites), improving air quality forecasts (Air-Now), monitoring mining’s footprint, bolstering water security and combating mercury hazards.

Latest new initiatives are AfriGEOSS, including the African Water Cycle Co-ordination Initiative, the Cholera Early Warning System, the Global Carbon Observing System and BluePlanet (oceans and society).

Exploratory projects for development during 2015-2025 include global information systems for oceans, land cover, urban observations, wildfire, drought, carbon analysis, mountains and cold regions.

GEO’s general concern with nine ‘societal benefit areas’ will continue. They are agriculture, biodiversity, climate, disasters, ecosystems, energy, healthy, water and weather.

GEO’s second decade media announcement here.

The United States Mission to Geneva’s GEO-supportive video here.