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GEO News (Issue #13, 21 March 2011)


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IMPLEMENTING GEOSS
  GEO monitors, analyzes, and distributes data on the Japan disaster
  A new GEO Geohazard Supersite on the Tohoku-oki Event was established immediately after the 11 March earthquake and tsunami to aid rescue efforts and advance scientific understanding. Meanwhile, the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters was activated at the request of the Japanese Cabinet and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). JAXA is distributing updated PALSAR, ScanSAR and FBS data via its FTP site, and the Italian Space Agency (ASI) is providing data and data products for use by experts. Continued …
   
  Germany’s national GEO coordination strategy
  The German experience confirms that establishing a national GEO structure, with a leading coordinating Ministry, a national Working Group consisting of colleagues from concerned authorities, and a national GEO Secretariat can noticeably improve the effectiveness of GEOSS implementation at the national level as well as a country’s contributions to international efforts. Continued …
   
  Strengthening GEOSS support to climate impacts researchers
  Some 60 scientists and experts participated in a three-day workshop in February that focused on how to improve the ability of researchers who study climate impacts, adaptation and vulnerability to access new and existing multi-disciplinary data and data products. Continued …
   
  Promoting EU engagement in GEOSS
  The 5th GEO European Projects Workshop (GEPW-5) took place at the Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, London, on 8-9 February. It was the latest in a series of workshops designed to foster and enhance European participation within GEO and to increase co-ordination between GEOSS implementation and existing, or future, Earth Observation projects in Europe. Continued …
   
  GEO BON assesses biodiversity monitoring capabilities
  The Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) convened an International Expert Meeting from 1 to 3 March in Wageningen, The Netherlands, to prepare an “Assessment of the Adequacy of Existing Observation Capabilities for the CBD 2020 Targets”. Continued …
   
  Governments pursue GEO African Water Cycle Coordination Initiative
  The 2nd GEOSS African Water Cycle Symposium convened in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 23 to 25 February to explore plans to develop an “African Water Cycle Coordination Initiative” within the GEO framework. Continued …
   
  Supporting sustainable tourism in the Caribbean
  The workshop on "Earth Observation Support for Sustainable Tourism in Small Island States," held in San Juan, Puerto Rico, from 9 to 11 March, focused on the specific needs, challenges and capabilities related to sustainable tourism in the small island states of the Caribbean. Continued …
   
GEO UPDATE
  Tajikistan joins GEO
  The Republic of Tajikistan became the 86th Member of GEO on 3 March.
   
  Technical review launched for GEO 2012-2015 Work Plan
  Version 0 of the next and final GEO Work Plan has been distributed to the GEO community for comment by 26 May. The draft Work Plan, which can be found here, has been designed to fully address the 2015 Strategic Targets; establish an operational and sustainable GEOSS; reinforce coordination, user engagement and resource mobilization; and provide information products and end-to-end services tailored to serve society’s needs across the nine Societal Benefit Areas. All members of the GEO community are invited to send their comments to the Secretariat at secretariat@geosec.org so that the next version of the Plan can be submitted for official review in late June.
   
  CBC addresses regional activities, coordination and networking
  The major objectives of the 13th meeting of the Capacity Building Committee were to address follow-up actions from the GEO-VII Plenary and Beijing Ministerial Summit, review and implement the current Work Plan (2009-2011), finalize the CBC Roadmap, consider capacity-building actions for the 2012 -2015 Work Plan, advance the 2010 CBC-UIC Call for Proposals, and coordinate with the Architecture and Data Committee. Continued …
   
  ADC pursues improvements to the GEOSS Common Infrastructure
  The 15th meeting of the Architecture and Data Committee, held in Campos do Jordão, Brazil, from 28 February to 3 March, addressed preparations for the 2012-2015 Work Plan, enhancements to the GEOSS Common Infrastructure (GCI), and coordination with the Capacity Building Committee. Continued …
   
  UIC sets priorities for 2011
  The 17th meeting of the User Interface Committee, held on 25-28 January, decided on the Committee’s work activities over the coming year and agreed to move forward on user engagement strategies. Continued …
   
ANNOUNCEMENTS
  GEO Work Plan Symposium to focus on 2012-2015 Plan
  From 4-6 May in Geneva, the 2011 Work Plan Symposium will advance the development of the 2012-2015 Work Plan. The Symposium will also give participants the opportunity to discuss progress, exchange information, and strengthen coordination across the current 2009-2011 Work Plan. The draft agenda and other information have been posted here.
   
  Quality Assurance for Earth Observation (QA4EO) Workshop
  The Quality Assurance for Earth Observation (QA4EO) Workshop on Providing Quality Information in Harmonised Earth Observation Data by 2015 will be held from 18 – 20 October 2011 at Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) near Oxford, UK. The workshop will present and discuss data quality assurance implementation examples across a wide variety of societal benefit areas. For more information see the brochure.
   
  ICIMOD vacancy announcement
  ICIMOD/MENRIS is looking for several innovative, talented and enthusiastic people to support the new developments within its programmes. Continued …
   
   
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