What is Earth Observation?

Earth Observation (EO) is the process of gathering information about the Earth’s surface, waters and atmosphere via ground-based, airborne and/or satellite remote sensing platforms.

The acquired data are processed and analysed to extract different types of information that can be used to monitor and assess the status of – and changes in – both the natural and human-made environments.

EO data serves a very wide range of applications and industries, including: environmental protection, energy, managing urban areas, regional and local planning, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, health, transport, climate change, sustainable development, civil protection, tourism – and more.

Europe’s Earth Observation programme is called Copernicus. Using a combination of satellites, in-situ sensors and air- and sea-borne sensors, Copernicus looks at our planet and its environment and provides data and information that benefits all European citizens.

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