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Implementing European Space Policy: Key ESA/EC agreement on Earth Observation data signed today

An agreement on space-based information services and access to, and provision of, Earth Observation data was signed today by ESA and the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. The signature took place at ESRIN, the ESA Earth Observation Centre in Frascati, Italy.

Dr Volker Liebig, Director of ESA's Earth Observation Programme, signed the agreement on the 'Specific arrangement concerning the development of space-based information services and the access to and provision of Earth Observation data' on behalf of the ESA Director General, Jean-Jacques Dordain, while Mr Freddy Dezeure, Director of Programme and Resource Management of the EC Joint Research Centre (JRC), signed on behalf of the EC. "This document defines the respective tasks and responsibilities of ESA and the JRC for a strong coordinated approach to the use of Earth Observation data in support of the information services of the EU. This will strengthen cooperation with the EU and secure the GMES (the joint EC-ESA initiative for Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) as a major information management and policy support tool for Europe," said Volker Liebig.

There are four fields in which ESA and the JRC undertake to work together in close cooperation:

coordinating the use of Earth Observation satellite missions, in which they have a common interest developing services aimed at meeting the specific needs of end users (in particular in EU services) optimising access to support information for EC actions coordinating and providing technical support with regard to Earth observation activities within the European initiative INSPIRE (INfrastructure for SPatial InfoRmation in the European Union), whose objective is harmonising the methods employed by Member States to collect data on the geographical characteristics of their own territories.

This agreement has been achieved in the awareness that coordinated use of Earth observation technology makes it
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Contact: Simonetta Cheli
simonetta.cheli@esa.int
39-06-941-80-350
European Space Agency
26-Oct-2005


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