GEOITALY | GEO Candidate Initiatives
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GD-09 GEO Knowledge

GD-09 GEO Knowledge
General Description

The key objective of this task is to “develop a comprehensive interdisciplinary knowledge base defining and documenting observations needed for all disciplines. This will allow sharing not just data but also how these data can be used to address key policy or scientific question, and link also to the community of users addressing similar problems.

 

The Knowledge base will document the relationships between the data and the processes (models, workflows, algorithms) needed to develop the selected information/indicators.

The functionality of the knowledge base will support the GEOSS infrastructure in facilitating availability and accessibility of the observations to user communities. The knowledge base will include the rules for defining the observational needs and how to link them to user requirements, addressing a wide range of environmental and socio-economic information needs. Of particular interest are those information needs that are linked to indicators supporting the advocacy and monitoring of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The knowledge base will include rules to define the observation needs for these indicators.

 

The GEO Knowledge Base will be developed by leveraging existing knowledge repositories and databases and documenting what is being developed in association with GEO activities.

It will include user feedback with respect to the fitness for purpose of both data and processes.

Implementation approach and respective responsibilities

The activities will be performed by a Task Team lead by Hans Peter Plag, IEEE hpplag@odu.edu and Stefano Nativi, CNR Italy stefano.nativi@cnr.it

The Secretariat, will ensure dialogue between the Community-developing Knowledge- and the GCI development Team, developing solutions to make it available through the Portal. Key inputs are expected to come from task GD-8.

A. Contributors (IEEE. CNR, others TBD)

  1. Identify relevant existing and developing knowledge bodies in various domains.
  2. Develop the concept for a comprehensive interdisciplinary knowledge base defining and documenting observations needed for all disciplines, including the rules for deriving the observational needs from user’s requirements.
  3. Design and develop the functionalities in order to support the GEOSS infrastructure, including the DAB, in facilitating discoverability and usability of observations to user communities;
  4. Implement a prototype of the knowledge base and import the contents of the GEOSS User Requirements Registry to the prototype –i.e. one of the knowledge bodies.

B. GEO Secretariat

  1. Support the task Team
  2. Support the development and population of the Knowledge Base and engage user communities, including S&T communities, in these activities.
  3. Document the relevant existing and developing knowledge bodies in various domains and establish organizational links where needed.
  4. Coordinate the utilization of the knowledge base (e.g. in the GCI) and contribution to the knowledge base from all GEO activities (community, initiatives, flagships) and ensure coordination with capacity building activities.
Planned activities and outputs for 2016

Form and convene the Team

  • Issue a report on GEOSS knowledge base concept and development approach
  • Start the compilation of available knowledge resources
  • Design and prototype a database to host GEO-developed knowledge
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GD-08 SBAs process: Systematic determination of user needs / observational gaps

GD-08 SBAs process: Systematic determination of user needs / observational gaps
General Description

Undertake regular, systematic analysis of global observational requirements to identify, document, prioritize and close gaps in the information value chain. Publicize gap analysis and the need to close them.

 

Societal Benefit Areas will provide the framework to perform this analysis by providing an important function in engaging stakeholders from different domains, different regions, and different roles – including from end users to data providers.

 

Once in place and running this process is also expected to provide other key outputs such as contributing to user engagement and to knowledge development.

Implementation approach and respective responsibilities

The GEO Secretariat will activate this SBA-related process, building on the activities of the communities that are already active within each SBA  and progressively cover the totality of the SBAs themself.

 

The Secretariat will coordinate the participation of key stakeholders to the agreed activities, will foster their engagement and the exchange among them and create the relevant linkages to GEO activities (Community, Initiatives and Flagships).

 

The GEO Secretariat will coordinate and support this SBA process by appointing one expert for each of them and by assigning dedicated resources in the trust fund, to support their activities.

Planned activities and outputs for 2016

The 2016 will be used to activate this process, starting from the SBAs  already active and ensuring participation by all the actors involved in the Information value chain from the observations to the end user service, (here included the private sector) as well as by the developers of the GCI. Expected outputs:

  • Issue a document describing the process and how it will be run
  • Define initial plans for each SBA
  • Activate of the process for at least three SBAs by 2016
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GD-07 GCI Development (CNR)

GD-07 GCI Development (CNR)
General Description

Describe and update the GCI evolution strategy and architecture based on documented and emerging user requirements, the analysis of the evolving landscape for technology and production/ consumption of Earth Observation (EO) data products and services. Conduct research and development activities, in collaboration with public, private, and voluntary sectors, to develop and test new functionalities, solutions, and components needed to support the GEO Strategic Plan objectives and user needs. Prepare documentation and training materials needed to support the transition from development to operations of identified new components and solutions.

Implementation approach and respective responsibilities

This task will be implemented by the GEOSS Development Working Group (GDWG) in collaboration with GD02 (GCI Operations including access to Knowledge) task, and will include major contributors. The GEO Secretariat will support the GDWG and ensure that its activities are fully supportive of the GCI.

a. Contributors (JRC, USGS, CNR, ESA, OGC, IEEE, NOAA)

  1. Develop a GEOSS Architecture based on documented and emerging user requirements informed by the GD08 (SBA process), GD09 (Knowledge Base Development), Flagships, Initiatives,Community Activities, and analysis of the evolving landscape for technology and production/consumption of EO data products and services
  2. Develop and test new GCI functionalities, solutions, and components
  3. Collect and analyze the survey results supporting theData Management Guidelines and develop a process to implement the Guidelines for providers
  4. Implement subsequent Demonstration Pilot Projects this year in 2016 to test solutions and to promote the use of GEOSS data in developing products and services. Demonstration Pilots will 1) discover assets that respond to a flagships EO data needs, 2) efficiently access and harvest the responsive assets and 3) operationally integrate those resources into a short-term or long-term GEOSS product or service for societal use.  (ex. GEOGLAM Crop)
  5. Promote the advancement of GEOSS interoperability through the Standards and Interoperability Forum (SIF)
  6. Engage the GEOSS community through guidelines and tutorials that explains the utilization of the GEOSS and the GCI.
  7. Continue to develop the Community Portal Recommendations paper that provides best practices, examples and lessons-learned to promote and facilitate communities’ use of the GCI and assist them in contributing their capabilities to GEOSS.

 

b. GEO Secretariat

  1. Overarching coordination and support
  2. GCI Requirements consolidation and update.
Planned activities and outputs for 2016
  1. Draft document of GEOSS Architecture
  2. Consolidate/update a document “Evolution of GCI functionalities and architecture” including following topics:
  • A report on “GCI Operations options” for 2016
  • Plenary decision and implementation starting from 2017.
  1. Interact with GD08 (SBA process) and GD09 (Knowledge base) to collect requirements for designing the new functionalities
  2. Implement new functionalities in 2016 to improve the accessibility and usability of GCI resources.
  3. Report results on Demonstration pilot Projects
  4. Approved Data Management Guidelines at GEO-XIII and draft a process of implementation with Flagships, Initiatives and Community Activities with training and workshops.
  5. Organize a GEOSS Interoperability Workshop in 2016 and conduct virtually (arranged and managed by the SIF)
  6. Publish new guidelines and tutorials in the Best Practices Wiki (The process is managed by the SIF.)
  7. Deliver an updated version of the Community Portal Paper with specific recommendation based on interactions between community components and the GCI.

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

Task Team 

preliminary

Lead

US/ USGS

Ivan DeLoatch

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

Contributor

US/ USGS

Rich Frazier

efrazier@usgs.gov

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

EC/ JRC

Alessandro Annoni

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

EC/ JRC

Massimo Craglia

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

ESA

Mirko Albani

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

ESA

Joost Van Bemmelen

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

ESA

Guido Colangeli

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

IEEE

Steven Browdy

steveb@omstech.com

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture SIF, Guidance and Tutorial Documents

Italy/CNR

Stefano Nativi

stefano.nativi@cnr.it

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

US/USGS

Liping Di

ldi@gmu.edu

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

US/NOAA

Ken McDonald

kenneth.mcdonald@noaa.gov

Community Portal

OGC

Bart de Lathouwer

bdelathouwer@opengeospatial.org

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture

Former DMTF

TBD

DMP IG

GEO Secretariat

Paola De Salvo

Evolution GEOSS and GCI Architecture, AIP, SIF, Community Portal

Osamu Ochiai

Overall Task Management

Chao Xing

DMP IG

Wenbo Chu

DMP IG

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GD-02 GCI Operations

GD-02 GCI Operations
General Description

Operate and maintain a user driven GEOSS Common Infrastructure (GCI) to discover and access GEOSS resources (e.g. datasets and services). Ensure routine operations, whilst maintaining the GCI as the architectural framework essential to supporting the GEOSS Data Sharing Principles. Support the integration of new GCI capabilities as developed and tested in GD-07. Continuously engage with data and service providers and user communities to connect new resources.

 

Implementation approach, respective responsibilities
The task activities will be performed by a task Team under the coordination of the GEOSS Development Working Group (GDWG), see task GD-07. The role of current operators will be kept for 2016, progressively adding user support functions by the Secretariat.

GCI Components operators (ESA, CNR, USGS, IEEE)
Perform GCI Components operations including maintenance, administration, monitoring and integration – covering both software and hardware
Maintain partnership with Data and Service Providers and improve these Providers discoverable and accessible through the GCI in mutually agreed methods Connect new providers which are relevant to Flagships and key members and participating organizations
Collect requirements and feedback from User Communities and Stakeholders for improving current GCI capabilities to ensure reliable products and services

Planned activities and outputs for 2016

Continue GCI operations

Develop a concept paper on user desk will work by April 2016, with interactions and support by SIF. User desk should be operational in 2016

Start the configuration control of GCI

Improve capabilities of existing brokering providers in particular more accessibility

Connect new providers giving priority to those relevant to Flagships, Initiatives and Community Activities and key members and participating organizations

Definition of improvements of early next year to be incorporated in the next 3year WP

Test and release new GEOSS resource registration process, including the synchronization of the CSR and the DAB.

Group Membership
GEO Secretariat

Overarching coordination and GCI configuration management including to maintain the GCI documentation and the list of the GCI Component and related representative persons

Develop a service desk operation concept paper by April of data and technical assistance and support services to Data and Service Providers, User Communities and Stakeholders. Support will be provided by Standard and Interoperability Forum (SIF)

Coordinate to improve capabilities of existing providers and also to connect new data providers

Integrate GCI performance measurement tracking and reporting capabilities across GCI Components and Services

Task leads

preliminary

Lead

ESA

Mirko Albani

mirko.albani@esa.int

GEOSS Portal

Contributor

ESA

Guido Colangeli

GEOSS Portal

ESA

Joost Van Bemmelen

GEOSS Portal

IEEE

Steven Browdy

Standard & Interoperability Registry, Best Practices Wiki

Italy/ CNR

Stefano Nativi

stefano.nativi@cnr.it

DAB

Italy/ CNR

Mattia Santoro

mattia.santoro@cnr.it

DAB

US/ USGS

Rich Fraizer

Component and Service Registry

US/ USGS

Liping Di

ldi@gmu.edu

Component and Service Registry

US/ USGS

Ranjay Shrestha

rshresth@masonlive.gmu.edu

Component and Service Registry

GEO Secretariat

Paola De Salvo

Osamu Ochiai

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GD-01 Advancing GEOSS Data Sharing Principles

GD-01 Advancing GEOSS Data Sharing Principles
General Description

Continue promoting free, full, open and timely access to Earth Observation datasets, products and services. Maintain dialogues with Governments and support the up-take and implementation of the GEOSS Data Sharing principles by GEO Members and Participating Organizations.  Raise awareness of the technical, organizational, and resource implications of implementing the GEOSS Data Sharing Principles.

Implementation approach, respectively responsibilities

 

The activities will be performed by a dedicated Working Group, supported by the GEO Secretariat.

Responsibilities

a. Task Members
Update implementation guidelines on Data Sharing Principles that underpin the quality of available data, information and tools and support their integrated use.
Keep track of international Open Data trends and continue to evolve the next generation of Data Sharing Principles as necessary.
Analyze and advocate the benefits of Data Sharing. Raise global awareness, including in developing countries, about the free and open datasets, products and services provided through GEOSS including support of measuring and monitoring of the SDGs.
Promote national coordinating mechanisms for implementing the Data Sharing Principles Post-2015 and monitor data sharing progress by the GEO member governments.
Analyze Data Commons in GEO SBAs that enable data sharing across various SBAs. Address legal interoperability of datasets across various SBAs, through recommended mechanisms to share data as part of GEOSS DataCORE or compatible open licenses.
Monitor, interpret, and adjust the use metrics to gauge the utilization of shared resources and their value to both data providers and data users, within and across SBAs.

b. GEO Secretariat
Support the coordination and the administration of this task
Data sharing point of contact to the external world and helpdesk function, in coordination with the SIF, for Data Providers and Users
Promotion and extension of GEOSS DataCORE
Manage and operate a Use Metrics component of the GCI.

Planned activities and outputs for 2016

Hold at least one meeting of DSWG.
Update Implementation Guidelines on Data Sharing Principles for Plenary approval in 2016.
Produce a report on international Open Data trends.
Draft a summary of mechanisms for monitoring the status of GEO Members in establishing and implementing Open Data Policies.

Task leads

May change according to ToR of the Working Group

David Halpern

COSPAR

david.halpern@jpl.nasa.gov

Catherine Doldirina

EC

catherine.doldirina@jrc.ec.europa.eu

Michel Schouppe

EC

EC

michel.schouppe@ec.europa.eu

Robert Chen

ICSU

bchen@ciesin.columbia.edu

Paul Uhlir

ICSU

puhlir@nas.edu

Lerato Senoko

RSA

lerato.senoko@dst.gov.za

Greg Withee

US

gwithee@msn.com

Contributors

Baden Appleyard

Australia

b.appleyard@ausgoal.gov.au

Guoqing Li

China

ligq@radi.ac.cn

Ying Su

China

suy.rspc@istic.ac.cn

Chuang Liu

China

lchuang@igsnrr.ac.cn

Kerry Sawyer

CEOS

kerry.sawyer@noaa.gov

Jean-Louis Fellous

COSPAR

jean-louis.fellous@cosparhq.cnes.fr

Puneet Kishor

CC

CC

punkish@creativecommons.org

Jose Miguel Rubio Iglesias

EC

EC

jose-miguel.rubio-iglesias@ec.europa.eu

Simon Hodson

ICSU

execdir@codata.org

Nico Bonora

Italy

nico.bonora@isprambiente.it

Francois Robida

IUGS

f.robida@brgm.fr

Masatoshi Kamei

Japan

kamei@restec.or.jp

Daisuke Saisho

Japan

saisho.daisuke@jaxa.jp

Ambinintsoa Noasilalaonomenjanahary

Madagascar

noasilalao@meeft.gov.mg

Frank Lantsheer

Netherlands

frank.lantsheer@knmi.nl

Ganiyu Agbaje

Nigeria

gagbaje@yahoo.co.uk,

ganiyu.agbaje@nasrda.gov.ng

Miles Gabriel

United Kingdom

milesgabriel@geois.co.uk

Kevin Murphy

United States

kevin.j.murphy@nasa.gov

Michael Tanner

United States

michael.tanner@noaa.gov

Sergio Albani

EU SatCen

sergio.albani@satcen.europa.eu

Steven Browdy

IEEE

steveb@omstech.com

Mariel Borowitz

ICSU

mariel.borowitz@inta.gatech.edu

Daniel Quintart

EC

EC

daniel.quintart@ec.europa.eu

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GI-17 Global Urban Observation and Information

GI-17 Global Urban Observation and Information
Overview

The Global Urban Observation and Information Task has set the following goals for the period of 2012-2015: (1) Improving the coordination of urban observations, monitoring, forecasting, and assessment initiatives worldwide; (2) Supporting the development of a global urban observation and analysis system; (3) Producing up-to-date information on the status and development of the urban system – from local to global scale; (4) Filling existing gaps in the integration of global urban observation with data that characterize urban ecosystems, environment, air quality and carbon emission, indicators of population density, environmental quality, quality of life, and the patterns of human environmental and infectious diseases; and (5) Developing innovative techniques in support of effective and sustainable urban development.

For the period of 2016-2025, we support the GEO’s proposal that a single GEO Initiative on urban issues will be created in the new Work Programme. All activities are continuous in nature or extensions of the GEO SB-04 activities, which make it easy for the transition in 2016.

 

Point of contact: Qihao Weng, Indiana State University – USA qweng@indstate.edu

2016 Activities
  • Global Urban Supersites Initiative (Expanded to Megacities Observation and Monitoring – MOM program: Currently supported by ESA DUE Innovators III (1/1/2015 – 12/31/2016) and Hong Kong Research Council (1/1/2016 – 12/31/2017), with partners from DLR, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Indiana State University, and National Observatory of Athens, Greece. A new partner starting in 2016 is Chinese Academy of Sciences, supported by National NSF of China (Grant No. 41201357). These projects focus on impervious surface data generation and providing the data sets for municipalities for megacities in the world.
  • Continued generation of Global Human Settlement Layers at various international and national levels and seek synergies among them. Dr. Weng has recently discussed potential collaboration with the National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geo-information of China, which has developed a global land cover dataset at 30 m resolution for 2000 and 2010. A special session will be held at 2016 ISPRS Congress to discuss about it.
  • Implementing Global Urban Remote Sensing Laboratory through joint projects: This activity has one funded project with €999,870, titled “Thematic Urban Observation Hub (TUrbO-Hub), supported by ESA Thematic Exploitation Platforms (TEP) program, 1/1/2015 – 12/31/2016, with Thomas Esch, DLR, as the PI with several co-Leads of SB-04 from Indiana State, National Observatory of Athens, University of Pavia, Italy, and KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. A new project has recently been awarded €200,000 through ESA DUE INNOVATOR III on Global Urban Services using Sentinel-1/-2 data (3/1/2015-2/28/2017) to University of Pavia and KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
  • Initiate a joint project of Impervious Surface Mapping in Tropical and Subtropical Cities – ISMiTSC (Asia, Africa, and South America): This initiative focuses on urban mapping and providing datasets and EO technology services to developing countries. A preliminary research has been conducted in selected cities in South America, Africa, South and East Asia with data support from DLR and research collaboration between Chinese University of Hong Kong, Indiana State, DLR and University of Pavia. Preliminary result will be published in late 2015 via a book by CRC Press/Taylor & Francis Group.
  • Establish a Global Institute of Sustainable Cities (GISC) – Explore EO as a enable technology for development of sustainable cities and for supporting GEO’s objective on urban resilience and coastal resilience by supplying objective data/information on the footprint of global urbanization and assisting in the development of indicators for sustainable cities to support the UN’s sustainable development goals. This initiate has recently been funded at 5 million RMB Yuan by Fujian Normal University, China, 2015-2020.
  • The International Program on Global Urban Observation and Public Health (IPUP) – linking global urban environment monitoring with public health from space and in situ measurements: This initiative was initiated in Changsha, China, in June 2014, and has obtained support from Global Institute of Sustainable Cities (GISC), Fujian Normal University, China (PI, Q. Weng). An international workshop was held in Wuhan, China, June 17-18, 2015, to discuss about this initiative, and will continue the workshop every year.
  • Create an annual International Summer School to train and educate students and young researchers worldwide in conjunction with GEO Urban annual symposium/workshop: This initiative will be discussed further during conference of the Mapping Urban Areas from Space – MUAS 2015 at ESA – ESRIN (Frascati – Italy), November 4-5, 2015.
  • Organize Annual GEO SI-13 Symposium (in conjunction with a conference, e.g., JURSE, EORSA, or a designated workshop from a project) to showcase results, to promote GEO/GI-13 goals, to engage users, and to foster synergies among international contributors. Each symposium has a specific theme. Sponsor an urban public health workshop that will assess the integration of our data and products into public health decision makers. The 2016 Annual Global Urban Observation Symposium will be held in Fuzhou, China, in conjunction with the 4th EORSA international conference.
  • Collaboration with ISPRS and IEEE GRSS: There will be a special session (SpS18: Earth Observation from Global Land to Urban Systems) at ISPRS Congress, July 12-19, 2016, Prague, Czech, and another special session (focus on Sensors and Sensing Techniques for Urban Areas) at 2016 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, Beijing, July 10-15, 2016.
  • Facilitate publications and disseminate the results through collaboration with Elsevier and Taylor & Francis: A new Elsevier journal “Remote Sensing Applications: Society and Environment” (starting Oct. 2014) has a focused section on urban observation and applications (G. Xian; X.L. Ding, Associate Editors); A theme issue on Earth observation from global land to urban systems is planned to publish at ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing in 2016/2017; CRC Press/Taylor & Francis Group will publish a book titled “Remote Sensing for Sustainability” in 2016/2017.
  • Continue to seek synergies with other GEO tasks/initiatives, such as Global Land-cover and Land-cover Change, Global Ecosystem Classification, Mapping and Inventory, Extension and Improvement of the Climate Record, and Air-borne Diseases, Air Quality and Aeroallergens; Investigation of the relationship between the thermal urban environment and heat-related morbidity and mortality.
2016 Resources

Projects:

  • German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD) and German Aerospace Center (DLR) in support of global urban footprint production.
  • US Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resource Observation and Science Center (EROS) in support of national land cover datasets generation.
  • “Thematic Urban Observation Hub (TUrbO-Hub), supported by ESA Thematic Exploitation Platforms (TEP) program, 1/1/2015 – 12/31/2016, led by DLR.
  • “Earth Observation for Urbanization” (EO4U)” supported by the ESA DUE-Innovators III program, 1/1/2015 – 12/31/2016, led by DLR.
  • ESA DUE INNOVATOR III on Global Urban Services using Sentinel-1/-2 data (3/1/2015-2/28/2017) awarded to University of Pavia and KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
  • “Improving the Estimation of Impervious Surfaces Using Optical and Polarimetric SAR Data in Humid Subtropical Urban Areas” supported by Hong Kong Research Grants Council led by Chinese University of Hong Kong, 1/1/2016-12/31/2017.
  • TREASURE: Thermal Risk rEduction Actions and tools for SecURE cities, supported by a European Civil Protection project, led by National Observatory of Athens, Greece.
  • “Continuous Monitoring of the Distribution of Urban Temperatures in 5 Greek Cities’ in Excellence Research Programs General Secretariat for Research and Technology (Greece)- SIEMENS awarded to National Observatory of Athens, Greece, 2014-2016.
  • DRAGON 3 (KTH, UNIPV, DLR) – “Urbanization project”: Use of European and Chinese EO data to monitor urban expansion in selected areas of P.R. China.
  • NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Marshall Space Flight Center Interdisciplinary Science Project, “Combining satellite data and models to assess the impacts of urbanization on the continental United States surface climate”.
  • ABCC (CEODE, CAS & JRC): NSF of China project of “Comparative Study on Global Environmental Change Using Remote Sensing Technology”.
  • NOAA’s National Geophysical Data Center has a long standing program to generate and provide open access to global nighttime lights from satellite data.
  • Global Talents Program of Fujian Normal University, China, in support of creation of Global Institute of Sustainable Cities.
  • Funding for projects related to the NASA National Climate Assessment program.
  • The European Commission, JRC project: “Global Human Settlement Analysis for Disaster Risk Reduction” (GLOB-HS).
  • The European Commission, JRC project “European Urban Development and Territorial Cohesion” (E-URBAN).

In-kind (human resources)

  • Global Institute of Sustainable Cities, Fujian Normal University, China;
  • Data, models, and related resources associated with US NASA Earth Science research and Earth observing remote sensing platforms such as Terra and Aqua, and the 40-year availability of continuous Landsat data;
  • Additional in-kind contributions from the USA (Indiana State University, NASA) and China (Tsinghua University, National Satellite Meteorological Center), Italy (University of Pavia), IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society.
Leads and contributors

Social Benefit Area
Implementation Mechanism

GEO Candidate Initiatives

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GI-15 GEO GNOME Initiative: GEO Global Network for Observation and Information in Mountain Environments

GI-15 GEO GNOME Initiative: GEO Global Network for Observation and Information in Mountain Environments
Overview

Mountains are globally distributed environments, which are home to a significant fraction of the world’s human population, flora and fauna. These mountainous environments are rich in endemic and, sometimes, endangered species, particularly within biodiversity hot spots. Simultaneously, mountain ecosystems and environments are directly linked to downstream regions through natural pathways (e.g. rivers and ecologic corridors) as well as human infrastructures. Through these pathways, mountains play an important sustainable development role by providing essential water resources and services to not only the communities living in proximity, but also to the surrounding downstream societies and ultimately the global community.

The role of mountain regions and the associated challenges have also been given special attention in the UN Conference on Sustainable Development Rio+20 outcome document “The Future we Want” (see mountains chapter, paragraphs 210-212) which builds on previous declarations, including the mention of mountains in Chapter 13 Agenda 21 in 1992 and other important policy documents.

 

All mountain areas and mountain ecosystems are sensitive to the effects of climate, global and environmental change. The threat of losing crucial goods and services and associated benefits for the well being of communities depending on mountain resources is increasing (mountain societies in particular). And although mountain regions in diverse areas around the globe share many common aspects, they are often trans-boundary in nature and have individual peculiarities, which need to be both specifically and commonly addressed. It is also important that data and information exchange between the various mountain regions be facilitated, and access to this existing body of knowledge be made more readily available to policy makers and decision makers in order to respond to the challenges faced by mountain communities.

For all these reasons, it is essential to establish a Global Network for Observations and Information in Mountain Environments (GNOME), utilizing the partnership framework of the international Group on Earth Observations (GEO). GEO-GNOME will capitalize on previous achieved results and outcomes (such as GLORIA and other global and regional initiatives), with the goal to provide free and open-access to data and products, scientific results and future climate and environmental projections; foster exchange of data and information across different mountain areas and between the scientific community and stakeholders and better connect them; build capacity in mountain research, especially in remote areas; and create a distribution system for the dissemination of this knowledge, in particular to the local communities and decision makers to enable for change.

 

Particular importance will be given to the definition of national or trans-boundary Supersites and regional Natural Laboratories, such as the area of Karakoram and specific regions in South America, Africa and elsewhere, including internationally relevant protected areas. These natural laboratories can serve as pilot areas for monitoring and measuring ongoing changes, develop future scenarios with special emphasis on ecosystem services, and implement adaptation strategies through discussion with local populations and governments, taking into account also the needs of downstream populations.

 

With this as motivation, GEO-GNOME plans to:

► Create a comprehensive partnership of key stakeholders and network of existing measurement and observation systems in the mountain areas, collecting the data and information; and making them available through the GEOSS portals.

► Stimulate new measurements and observational campaigns in mountain areas, with special emphasis on sensitive areas and UNESCO designated Biosphere Reserves, Natural Heritage Sites and internationally relevant protected areas, stimulating the design of new/better management of existing protected areas and the establishment of new parks.

► Provide the Earth observations necessary to support implementation and monitoring of international conventions and agreements, such as the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD), the United Nations Framework the Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as well as regional mountain arrangements and agreements such as the Alpine and Carpathian Conventions.

► Make best use of Earth observations and remote sensing data, which can display critical aspects of mountain areas with complex topography and high elevations.

► Develop capacity-building strategies and concrete activities in mountain monitoring and sustainable development, through the provision of on-site courses and training exercises with a particular focus on developing countries with fragile mountainous ecosystem.

► Identify potential Supersites and Natural Laboratories, with the related Points of Contact and/or Regional Champions, and start operational activities in the selected areas.

► Create highly visible and valuable outputs (e.g. reports with summaries specifically dedicated to groups interested in mountain environments) to stimulate the interaction between researchers, stakeholders and in particular policy makers to identify the key environmental and associated issues in each mountain area and trigger relevant needed action on the various levels (global, regional etc).

 

The GEO SBAs supported include Biodiversity, Climate, Disasters, Ecosystems, Water, and Weather.

2016 Activities
  1. Telecon to be held in winter, 2016.
  2. One general workshop, to be held in spring/summer 2016
  3. Census of the existing mountain observatories and initiatives, in collaboration with MRI
  4. Collaboration with the Belmont CRA “Mountains as Sentinels of Change”, especially in the in-kind activity on mountain observatories
  5. Collaboration with the H2020 project ECOPOTENTIAL (for what concerns mountain ecosystems) and the newly-funded ERA-NET on climate services, to support the need for “mountain services”
  6. Identification of the priority scientific issues (e.g., elevation dependent warming; mountain hydrological cycle; effect of extreme events on the mountain environment) and related strategies of implementation
  7. Organization of two workshops with stakeholders, in key mountain areas of the world, to define the societal demands and challenges
2016 Resources

EUR1M (cash and in-kind)

Participation (updated spring 2015)
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Leads and contributors

Italy, CNR, Antonello Provenzale, antonello.provenzale@cnr.it (Lead)

 

Germany, Kathrin Weise, Jena-Optronik GmbH, Jena, Kathrin.weise@jena-optronik.de
United States, USGS, Roger Sayre, rsayre@usgs.gov
Germany, Adrian Strauch, University of Bonn, adrian.strauch@uni-bonn.de
Germany, Uni. Bayreuth, Carl Beierkuhnlein, carl.beierkuhnlein@uni-bayreuth.de
The Netherlands, DELTARES, Ghada El Serafy, ghada.elserafy@deltares.nl
United Kingdom, University of Leeds, Guy Ziv, G.Ziv@leeds.ac.uk
Spain, CREAF-UAB, Joan Masò, joan.maso@uab.cat

Other contributors as appropriate as the initiative grows

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GI-14 GECO: the GEO Global Ecosystem Initiative

GI-14 GECO: the GEO Global Ecosystem Initiative
Overview

Summary

An Ecosystems Societal Benefit Area (SBA) with a number of evolving, multi-component Ecosystem Tasks has existed since the beginning of GEO and GEOSS. For the second decade of GEO (2016-2025), a combined Biodiversity and Ecosystems Sustainability SBA has been established which features a number of new ecosystems-related initiatives. One of those initiatives is the Global Ecosystems (GECO) initiative, which combines new activities related to the H2020 ECOPOTENTIAL and SWOS projects with continuing global ecosystem mapping activities carried forward from the former GEO Ecosystems Task.

In 2014, two H2020 projects focused on the use of earth observations (both remote sensing and in situ) for the assessment of ecosystem services were funded. The two projects are: 1) ECOPOTENTIAL, a large 47-partner Consortium focused on the assessment of mountain environments, drylands, transitional coastal lagoons and Large Marine Ecosystems, and including more than 25 European and non-European protected areas of international relevance, and 2) SWOS (Satellite-based Wetland Observation Service), a smaller 13-partner project focused on developing an operational, remote sensing based, wetland observation service in support of international conventions, regulations and policy frameworks.. ECOPOTENTIAL includes a programmatic emphasis on macrosystems ecology, cross-scale interactions and coupled geosphere-biosphere processes, and it has the goal of building a GEO Ecosystems Community of Practice. The SWOS project directly contributes to the development of a Global Wetland Observation System (GWOS) together with global partners like e.g. GEO and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.

In addition to the H2020 activities, global ecosystem mapping work from the first decade of GEO and GEOSS is being carried forward and included in GECO. In partial satisfaction of the former GEO Ecosystems activity (EC-01-C1) to “map standardized, robust, and practical global ecosystems for terrestrial, freshwater, and marine environments”, a new global terrestrial ecosystems map was produced in a collaboration between the U.S. Geological Survey, Esri, and a number of international ecosystems experts. This new global Ecological Land Units (ELUs) product is a first-of-its-kind, globally comprehensive, high resolution, and data-derived characterization. While the global terrestrial ecosystems map is now completed, the global marine and global freshwater ecosystem maps are still outstanding. A major collaboration is now underway to produce a first-of-its-kind, 3D global ecological marine units (EMUs) map in analog fashion to the ELUs. The global EMUs map will be developed as a short-term (1-2 years) foundational activity of the GI-14 GECO initiative, and an analog global ecological freshwater units (EFUs) map will be advanced as a longer term (2-3 years) GECO activity.

The scope, timeframe, significance, and resourcing of the two European projects and the two global ecosystem mapping projects (marine and freshwater) are consistent with the nature of the concept and process for developing new GEO Initiatives in the second phase (2016-2025) of its existence, and have been accepted as such. Significant H2020 funding for the two European projects, and significant in-kind support available for the global ecosystem mapping efforts from Esri, are promising indicators of the commitment and likelihood of success for these activities in GECO.

 

Description

Terrestrial and marine ecosystems provide essential goods and services to human societies. In the last several decades, however, anthropogenic pressures are causing serious threats to ecosystem integrity, functions and processes, potentially leading to habitat degradation, creation of uncertainty related to “novel ecosystems” and increased risk of collapse, with related loss of ecosystem services. Ecosystem degradation and loss of ecosystem services can seriously affect human wellbeing and climate processes at local and regional scales (http://www.unep.org/ maweb/en/Framework.aspx), potentially amplifying the negative effects of global change.

Knowledge-based conservation, management and restoration policies are thus urgently needed in order to ensure delivery of ecosystem benefits in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures. Fundamental to all these is effective monitoring of the state and trends in ecosystem conditions and services. New monitoring methodologies are now available that combine approaches in geo- and bioscience, remotely sensed data, and in situ observations. Best use should be made of existing and future earth observations (EOs) and field monitoring data complemented by appropriate interpretation tools and data services and ecosystem models using these data. Knowledge must be built together with the relevant stakeholders to identify the relevant research outputs and support the use of new data and tools. Finally, synergies must be sought with other key ecosystems-related international initiatives and projects.

 

The European H2020 Project ECOPOTENTIAL is designed to facilitate significant progress beyond the state of the art in ecosystems assessments and monitoring. It will focus its activities and pilot actions on a targeted set of internationally recognised protected areas (PA) in Europe, European Territories and beyond, and will include mountain, arid and semi-arid, and coastal and marine ecosystems. PAs such as those included in the scope of ECOPOTENTIAL provide essential ecosystem services, but are exposed to a variety of pressures, which can change their very nature. ECOPOTENTIAL sites include UNESCO World Natural Heritage Sites, Biosphere Reserves, National Parks and important Natura 2000 sites. Additionally, two Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) in the Mediterranean and the Caribbean are included. In addition to their conservation importance as recognized by official decree, many of the selected sites are directly linked to Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) sites (http://www.lter-europe.net/).

 

In order to conserve wetlands biodiversity, the distribution of wetlands in time and space, which is highly variable, must be well characterized. Remotely sensed imagery offers much promise for this temporal and spatial characterization of wetland systems, some of which are ephemeral. The European H2020 Project SWOS focuses on the development and use of remote sensing information to support conservation and sustainable management of wetlands. Therefore, it follows an application focused and policy / user driven approach to develop an operational information portal and infrastructure that makes high quality data and information products available to users on different levels (local to global) and demonstrates this based on multi-level service cases. .

 

As mentioned above, a new global ELU map was recently published (December 2014) and is now available for research, assessments, and policy support. The work was produced in a public/private partnership between the USGS and Esri, and is in active deployment, curation and improvement. The ELUs were developed as an integration of four global characterizations of the primary elements of ecosystem structure (bioclimate, landfrom, lithology, and land cover). Since its initial release, a new global landforms and a new global land cover product have been developed. Since these represent two of the four input layers, the ELUs were remodeled using the new inputs, and a version 2.0 of the ELUs is now available.

 

Now turning their attention to global ecological marine units (EMUs), Esri and the USGS are teaming up again to produce a global EMU map in analog fashion to the ELUs. The EMUs will be a first-of-its-kind characterization of marine ecosystems, and will be derived from data at a relatively high spatial resolution and in true 3D. A methodology has been developed based on 3D statistical clustering of globally comprehensive marine physical environment data. The method has been successfully prototyped for marine ecosystems off the California coast, and the global implementation has commenced. A steering committee of experts from USGS, Esri, and other international organizations (e.g. UNESCO, IUCN, NOAA, NatureServe, World Bank, etc.) is actively managing and promoting the effort. The global EMU map is anticipated to be completed by January 2017. Meanwhile, a parallel global ecological freshwater units (EFUs) mapping effort is in discussion. It has not yet commenced in earnest, but will soon, and is anticipated in a 2-3 year timeframe. The EFUs will be modeled as ecologically meaningful surface waters (lakes, ponds, stream reaches, etc.) and will be overplotted (burned in) on top of the ELUs. The development of the global EFUs map will be done in close collaboration with the emerging SWOS (Satellite-based Wetland Observation Service), itself a priority activity of GECO. Together, the global EMUs and EFUs constitute a major deliverable from the GEO Global Ecosystems initiative.

 

Based on these existing perspectives and results, the GECO Initiative intends to build upon available results and extend them to a global scale, identifying Protected Areas of international relevance where the same methodology used in ECOPOTENTIAL can be applied. Parallel to this, GECO intends to support the efforts of extending and improving the ELU, EMU, and EFU maps currently in development, and fostering other research initiatives of the same kind.

2016 Activities

► Support the global ELU and EMU mapping, contributing with data and results in a close collaboration with the USGS group.

► Discuss how to export the results of ECOPOTENTIAL and SWOS to other ecosystem types and regions of the world, using the know-how and expertise developed during these two projects to set up a global monitoring and modelling approach to ecosystem functions and services.

► Contribute ecosystem data, results and models to the system of GEOSS portals.

► Create a partnership of key stakeholders and start the construction of the GEO Ecosystems Community of Practice.

► Plan a set of training course on the use of Earth Observation data in the management of ecosystems and preservation of ecosystem services.

► Support the development of conservation and management policies at international level, with the participation of international entities such as UNEP, UNESCO, IUCN, the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, and others.

► Invite representatives of Protected Areas with other ecosystem types and from other regions of the world to the General Assembly of the ECOPOTENTIAL project in mid 2016.

2016 Resources

EUR 4M (cash) + EUR 500k (in-kind) (ECOPOTENTIAL)

EUR 1.66M (cash) (SWOS)

US$ tbd, but substantial (in-kind) (Esri/USGS).

Leads and contributors

Italy, CNR, Antonello Provenzale, antonello.provenzale@cnr.it (Lead)

 

Germany, Kathrin Weise, Jena-Optronik GmbH, Jena, Kathrin.weise@jena-optronik.de
United States, USGS, Roger Sayre, rsayre@usgs.gov
Germany, Adrian Strauch, University of Bonn, adrian.strauch@uni-bonn.de
Germany, Uni. Bayreuth, Carl Beierkuhnlein, carl.beierkuhnlein@uni-bayreuth.de
The Netherlands, DELTARES, Ghada El Serafy, ghada.elserafy@deltares.nl
United Kingdom, University of Leeds, Guy Ziv, G.Ziv@leeds.ac.uk
Spain, CREAF-UAB, Joan Masò, joan.maso@uab.cat

Other contributors as appropriate as the initiative grows

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GI-11 Information Services for Cold Regions

GI-11 Information Services for Cold Regions
Overview

Coordinate global, joint efforts to provide Earth observations and information services to decision-makers over the vast Cold Regions areas, including the North Pole, South Pole, Himalaya-Third Pole and Mountain areas.

 

Objectives and actions

► Build a global network to archive, manage, and provide access to in-situ and remotely-sensed earth status data and social humanity data for monitoring the global cold regions through appropriate national, regional and global systems, centres and programs.

► Provide sustained observations and information exchange mechanism to understand the global change over the cold regions, and address their fragile ecosystem and environmental challenges and societal influences.

► Establish a proactive framework for the development of information and related services, the Global Cold Regions Community Portal, to underpin the Global Earth System of Systems implementation by expand the outreach of, and maximize synergies among, thematically wide GEO activities and thematically deep participant activities, thereby exploiting their complementary roles.

► Advocate open data policy, and free access to the earth observations data over Cold Regions.

► Strengthen the synergies and partnerships with policy-makers, stakeholders, and funders over the cold regions’ ecological and engineering fields, and improve the public awareness through the capacity building.

2016 Activities

► Building connections and collaboration between the participating organizations, projects and communities (joint on-line conferences and meetings)

► Building cross-cutting connections and collaboration with cold-regions related activities within GEO (a joint committees, including programs’ chairs, leaders and points of contact, as support to information services including scientific & technology group, data and information group, GEO secretariat, and users’ engagement group) (GEO Plenary and other joint GEO meetings).

► Starting to plan and establish the key or essential variables for cold regions (draft paper)

► Providing observations and products on various scales from cross-continental to regional and in-situ scales (contributions to GEOSS Data-Core etc)

► Bridging the remote-sensing and in-situ communities in the field of cold regions earth observations (joint workshop/seminar in connection or back-to-back with a scientific conference etc. labeled with the GEO/Cold Regions)

► Promotion of awareness the gaps in the scientific knowledge over cold regions (outreach, user engagement, user community, policy makers and stakeholders at various levels)

► Leveraging the use of cold regions related results and products for implementation in strategic assessments by scientific organizations, policy making and other end-users (meetings and knowledge exchange with organizations, consultations etc)

► Supporting, including financially, the so-called «Polar Challenge» (http://www.wcrp-climate.org/polarchallenge) from The World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation (FPA2) This challenge aims at rewarding the first team able to complete a 2000km mission with an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) under the sea-ice in the Arctic or Antarctic.

► Supporting the preparation phase of the Year of Polar prediction (YOPP, http://www.polarprediction.net; lead: Prof. Thomas Jung, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research)

► The Global Cryosphere Watch (GCW) will hold its second Asia CryoNet meeting in February 2016 in Salekhard, Russia. The goal is to further develop a regional GCW group focused on surface measurements in the Third Pole region and the Russian Arctic. A similar effort is underway in South America, with a second South America workshop planned for 2016. ($120,000 for both workshops).

► SAON will continue to work with these contributions: Documenting and understanding the Arctic data management ecosystem; Identifying and promoting common metadata elements; Engaging in data citation and publication movement; Promoting interoperability through action – interoperability experiment; Inventory of arctic observational projects as a contribution to EU PolarNet; Community Based Monitorin (CBM) atlas.

► INTERACT continues building capacity for research and in-situ observations throughout its pan-arctic station network, and bridging of the in-situ and remote sensing communities via joint activities and events. Open access to metadata and data and will be advocated in the station network, as well as efforts to connect open access metadata and data with global data portals such as the GEOSS Data-CORE. Collaboration with arctic and polar scientific organizations and input to strategic and scientific assessments continues. Outreach activities to inform policy makers, other stakeholders and the general public will be continued in various forms. (in-kind, national and international resources for 2016 to be identified later in 2015)

► PEEX will launch a comprehensive PEEX metadata collection and build a Modelling Demo (“PEEX View”).

► SIOS implementation phase will be supported by Italy, in the perspective of the extension of the CCT-IP concept to other areas of Svalbard ( Euro : 100, 000)

► IADC (Italian Arctic Data Centre) will be implemented as the portal of the Italian research activities in the Arctic. In the frame of the Antarctic Research National Programme (PNRA) a distributed cyber-infrastructure (National Antarctic Data Center- NDAC) will also be developed. Both actions, based on the brokering approach will be integrated in a unique Polar Data Infrastructure (PDI) (Euro: 200.000).

► Establish flagship stations within the Third Pole region for observation and monitoring; (US Dollars : $200,000),Set up rain gauge along the altitudinal range from 2000 m to 6500 m in a river basin of the Tibetan Plateau, and to obtain the elevation-dependent precipitation data.

► Snow Observations over Tibetan Plateau (SOTP) will continue to explore the remote sensing snow cover products over Tibetan Plateau, with in-kind and somehow $120,000 support from NSFC.

► ESA – MOST Dragon 4 Hydrology and Cryosphere Theme: It is expected that the current 10 projects under Dragon 3 will be clustered and continue through fewer but larger projects. As in Dragon 3, ESA is expected to provide limited support towards PhD / postdoc work under selected research projects. MOST / NRSCC supports Dragon projects through open Call for Proposals. Total resources committed to selected projects approximately estimated at 2 106 Є over the period 2016~2019.  CNR through Climate Change Integrated Project (CCT-IP) will continue to promote the upgrading of Ny Alesund as observation super-site in the Arctic ( Euro : 100.000).  A Chinese cubesat named TW-1A aiming for polar sea ice observation is scheduled to launch in October, 2015 and will provide satellite observations from December of 2015 in both Polar Regions. This satellite is proposed by Beijing Normal University and developed by Chinese Academy of Sciences.  The observations by the intended Chinese Water Cycle Mission (WCOM) with a dual frequency dual polarized microwave radiometer would fill a gap in current European observations and would be highly relevant to monitoring of water resources. The mission will provide observations of SWE, precipitation and soil moisture.( $1.5M)

► Cryosphere Monitoring Programme (CMP) will continue to explore the snow, glacier, glacial lake and GLOF over Nepal. This program is extended to Bhutan and Pakistan with support from The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs ($700,000).

► Through the Belmont Forum Initiatives Italy contributes to Cooperative Research Activities (CRA) of the Arctic Observing and Research for Sustainability and of the Mountains as Sentinels of Change. ( Euro : 200.000)

► Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR) and Hokkaido University will jointly conduct observations of ocean, land and atmosphere in the Arctic region and continue to promote Arctic Data Archive System (ADS), which will be a part of GEOSS Data-CORE, along with the framework of the “Arctic Challenge for Sustainability Projects (ArCS)” supported by MEXT .

Identification of additional activities will take place in meeting(s) later in 2015.

2016 Resources

In kind contributions. Possible other resources to be identified later in 2015.

Leads and contributors

Leads:
Yubao Qiu (PoC, qiuyb@radi.ac.cn),

Emilio Garcia Ladona (emilio@icm.csic.es),

Julie Friddell (julie.friddell@uwaterloo.ca),

Xiao Cheng (xcheng@bnu.edu.cn),

Hannele Savela (hannele.savela@oulu.fi),

Xin Li (lixin@lzb.ac.cn),

Marco Tedesco (mtedesco@nsf.gov)

 

Contributors: Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, India, Italy, Japan, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States, ICIMOD, CliC (WCRP), WMO, SAON, YOPP.

 

Italian contributors: CNR-ISAC, ….

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GI-05 Global Carbon Observation and Analysis System

GI-05 Global Carbon Observation and Analysis System
Overview

Climate change is one of the most important challenges that humanity will have to address in the coming decades. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has concluded that a large part of the observed rise of global temperature is very likely due to increasing greenhouse gases (GHG) in the atmosphere, driven by man-made emissions overtaking the natural cycles of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O). The perturbed global biogeochemical cycles of these greenhouse gases are a major driving force of current and future climate change. The primary agents of these perturbations are fossil fuel combustion and modifications of global vegetation through land use change, in particular deforestation. Deeper understanding of the driving forces of climate change requires full quantification of the GHG cycles. Regional GHG flux patterns, tipping-points and vulnerabilities can be assessed by long-term, high precision in-situ observations in the atmosphere and at the ocean and land surface. They are complemented by in-situ and satellite observations of carbon pools as well as total column observations from satellites. CEOS (Committee on Earth Observation Satellites) has responded to the GEO Carbon Strategy and provided coordination to all the national and regional satellite agencies; GCP (Global Carbon Project) has provided annual updates of the global carbon budget and coordinating many global and regional efforts, in particular by establishing the mean carbon balance of large regions in the RECCAP (REgional Carbon Cycle Assessment and Processes) project.

 

A GEO Carbon and GHG Flagship will contribute to the implementation of the next GEO Strategic Plan for the period 2016-2025. The flagship will address important issues needed to build a connected and interoperable global network for carbon cycle (CC) and greenhouse gas (GHG) observations in the atmospheric, terrestrial ecosystem and oceanic domains.

 

In particular the GCGF will address these questions:

► What kind of carbon cycle and GHG observations are urgently needed to support the Sustainable Development Goal: “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts” (and party the Goal: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss”)?

 

► Where are we coming from, i.e. what are the most important recent achievements in terms of science and infrastructural capacity?

 

► Where do we want to go, i.e. what remains to be done in the framework of GEO for the next 10 years? In particular, how can we ensure that achieved capacities can be fully explored for multiple needs and not just for the specific circumstances they were developed for?

 

► Who will be the important data providers, integrators and users?

 

► How can a sustainable structure be achieved? What is fundamental, what is desirable, what would be nice to have but not essential?

 

► What are the most urgent needs for integration between different information sources and across methodologies, between different regional networks and from data providers to users? What is the intent of integration? Blending? Coupling? Transforming? How do we assess integration methods in light of relevant objectives? How can different data sources and modeling approaches be used to evaluate our understanding of processes and their emergent properties?

 

The main objectives of this flagship are:

▪ to provide more inclusive coordination among the main actors monitoring carbon cycle and GHG at global level;

 

▪ to further develop inter-operability between satellite observations; in-situ infrastructures and integration networks by

 

▫ Data harmonization (data and metadata formats),

 

▫ Further development of full and open data sharing,

 

▫ Long-term sustainability of data centers and model result repositories,

 

▫ Understanding and quantifying scale issues and process information across in-situ measurements and satellite platforms;

 

▪ to support the development of Model Data Fusion to improve parameter optimization;

 

▪ to envisage a GEO role in organising and backing intercomparison exercises;

 

▪ to establishing standard datasets for synthesis and dissemination of policy-relevant information on global carbon cycle and GHG:

 

▫ to raise awareness and promote data use e.g. towards UNFCCC Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA);

 

▫ to liaise science with policy and provide decision makers with timely and more reliable policy-relevant information

 

▪ to coordinate the periodic update and supply of comprehensive carbon budgets (covering also less studied region/ecosystems, and unknown sources, with progressively reduced uncertainty) at different levels (global, regional, domains, etc.) and integrating different approaches;

 

▪ to provide knowledge that assures the quality of national inventories and to secure the effectiveness of UNFCCC.

 

Other objectives for the GEO flagship process:

▪ to support for sustaining, developing and exploiting existing as well as promoting new observing platforms and infrastructures;

 

▪ to harmonize existing protocols for biogeochemical data collection and analysis, as well as full and open sharing;

 

▪ to contribute data to cost-benefit analyses that show the costs of better informed actions versus inaction;

 

▪ Promote further consistency of observations and specification of uncertainty that is fully traceable and accepted by the community.

2016 Activities

Set up a Coordinating Team (before the end of 2015) and a Steering Committee (early 2016).

 

1.1 The CT team will be responsible for coordinating and running the 2016’s activities, and for the fundraising (see the following action). The SC will ensure the control and evaluation of the proper implementation and provide scientific review and guidance.
► Development of an Implementation Plan ► Fund raising

 

1.2 During 2016 one of the main activities will be dedicated to the raising of the funding required to carry out the flagship’s implementation plan. All partners involved will ensure a minimum level of funding commitment.
► Counducting a workshop

 

1.3 Subject: Assess the cost and benefits of an improved global carbon observing system
► Working structure

 

The first step is to decide task’s titles and contents, and the working structure. The main building blocks could be the following:

▪Define the elements for an optimal global carbon observing system, including the needed infrastructure

▪Collect and harmonize (to make them interoperable) all the possible available observations (in different domains, from different platforms, etc.) from past series to the currently operational networks

▪Improve assimilation systems and modelling efforts to ingest and process these observations and provide relevant products

▪Deliver new information products, tailored to the final users (particularly decision makers)

▪Develop and maintain an information portal, fully linked to the GEO portal, where all these data, information and products are visualized and freely shared

▪Assess the cost and benefits of an improved global carbon observing system.

2016 Resources

Initially, the resources needed for the Coordination Group and the Steering Committee will be mainly in-kind from the institutions willing to participate in the Flagship. Then, by 2016, the needed financial resources to support the Flagship will be sought.

Partners

Italian Contributor: CMCC

Social Benefit Area

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GEO Candidate Initiatives

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