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Respond Atlas reveals how satellites respond to humanitarian needs

Washington , Tue, 22 Nov 2011 ANI

Washington, Nov 22 (ANI): The Respond project, which has been using Earth observation techniques to assist in preparing for and responding to disasters and humanitarian crises, has released a portfolio of its services.


The Respond Atlas that is available online outlines global events where remote sensing assisted in preparing for and responding to disasters and humanitarian crises.


The Respond project began in 2004 as a European Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) initiative.


During its five years of service, hundreds of maps were produced to assist in relief efforts linked to crises such as the aftermath of Cyclone Nargis, the 2004 Asian tsunami and even Sudan's refugee situation in Darfur.


"Respond has successfully demonstrated the utility and effectiveness of using satellite-derived services to support the international humanitarian community," said Francesco Pisano, Manager of the UN Operational Satellite Applications Programme (UNOSAT).


"It was able to provide important information for crisis response operations and to open the way to the use of geospatial information in decision-making processes in humanitarian contexts," he stated.


The service provided mapping far beyond the disaster response phase by supporting recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction activities.


Respond also worked closely with the International Charter 'Space and Major Disasters', an international collaboration that gives rescue and aid workers rapid access to satellite data in the event of a disaster. (ANI)


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