The Space Climate Observatory (SCO), a unique initiative involving international space agencies and the United Nations, is calling for project applications focused on using global spatial and meteorological data to monitor climate change.

Launched in December 2019 by French President Emmanuel Macron at the One Planet Summit, SCO was established to address the need to step up international coordination for monitoring the consequences of climate change using earth observation.

This round marks the first global-wide call for project proposals with last year focusing only on French projects under the umbrella of SCO France. Previous proposals addressed agriculture, remote-sensing epidemiology, urban climate, coastline dynamics, mangroves, flooding and more.

Successful projects receive access to SCO’s high-profile network and support in the development of fundraising proposals and collaboration opportunities.

By bringing together aerospace partners from across Europe, South America, The Middle East and China along with project implementation expertise from the UN, SCO aims to become an important tool for decision-making on climate change preparedness, adaptation and resilience at local scales.

In the next phase, due to start in 2021, SCO intends to make project data and algorithms available to vulnerable regions through an international charter that can be activated on request.

With the European Space Agency estimating roughly 3,000 operational satellites orbiting the earth (as of September 2020) scientists are receiving more earth observation data than ever before.

In a discussion paper published in 2019 by the UN Science Policy Business Forum’s High Level Working Group on Big Data, the authors called for a global digital ecosystem for the environment to transform the way data from different sources is integrated and processed.

By helping to unlock the potential of earth observation data, initiatives such as SCO are helping to revolutionize our understanding of the environment and helping direct policy and investment decision-making down a sustainable path.

For more information about the call for project proposals and SCO, visit here

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Photo by NASA on Unsplash

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