Collaboration offers applicants cloud services for earth observation

March 17th, 2019, Published in Articles: EE Publishers, Articles: PositionIT, Featured: PositionIT

The new collaboration between the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) and Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers GEO member agencies and research organisations from developing countries access to cloud services to help with the hosting, processing and analysis of big data about the earth to inform decisions for sustainable development.

Eligible government agencies and research institutions can apply for AWS credits that will enable them to build earth observations applications that support environmental and development goals, including the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Recipients of cloud credits through this initiative will also receive support from the GEO community and AWS experts to refine and implement their projects for the best possible results.

Applications are welcome for non-commercial projects that address the GEO Work Programme, and in particular GEO’s three engagement priorities: the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Paris Agreement for Climate and the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Use of earth observation data from any open, free and fully accessible source is strongly encouraged in the proposed project. To discover and access free and open data, proponents are invited to use the GEOSS Portal. The GEO Secretariat will facilitate access to analysis-ready data from the Copernicus and Landsat programmes for proposals wishing to make use of this data.

The deadline for submissions is 31 March 2019. Criteria for applications can be found here.

An example of a multinational earth observation project taking advantage of AWS Cloud credits is the Africa Regional Data Cube. This recently-launched tool builds on technology developed in Australia, enabling five countries in Africa to inspect changes to any geographic area over the past 35 years. AWS has provided cloud credits for this project for three years to help the countries see the value in the tool and prototype long-term solutions.

As in Australia, the technology is expected to become a key piece of public data infrastructure that provides users with an analysis platform for satellite imagery to address key development challenges, including food security, disaster risk management, coastal erosion and urban expansion.

Contact Douglas Cripe, GEO, dcripe@geosec.org

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