Land Monitoring

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The impact of climate change on the Earth's surface can be studied from orbit, offering a broader perspective than in situ observations.

Thematic Results

Rapid acceleration of an Arctic glacier over the past year has been detected by the Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellites.

With the pair of Sentinel-2 satellites now in orbit, users are looking ahead to mapping global land cover at 10 m resolution.

One of Greenland's glaciers is losing five billion tonnes of ice a year to the ocean, according to researchers. While these new findings may be disturbing, they are reinforced by a concerted effort to map changes in ice sheets with different sensors from space agencies around the world.

Conservation organisations and space agencies are being called on to join forces to decide how changes in biodiversity can be monitored globally. What, exactly, should be measured by satellites?

Rapid ice loss in a remote Arctic ice cap has been detected by the Sentinel-1A and CryoSat satellites.

How do measurements from satellites flying above Earth provide essential information on the effects of climate change on our planet? Scientific and political organisations considered the question in London today.

Melting at one of the largest ice caps on Earth has produced a big jump in its flow speed, satellite imagery suggests.

Twenty years of radar coverage from ESA satellites have been used to measure the rapid thinning of Antarctica's Pine Island Glacier - and it's losing more ice than previously thought.

The 2014 World Wetlands Day highlights the need for wetlands and the agriculture sector to work together. ESA's GlobWetland II project assists Mediterranean countries in the sustainable use of these areas and demonstrates the evolution of wetlands and agricultural patterns over time.

With the Copernicus environmental monitoring programme’s first satellite nearing launch, Portugal explores how best to exploit this initiative’s critical information.

Like thermometers in the sky, satellite instruments can measure the temperatures of Earth's surfaces. ESA's new GlobTemperature project is merging these data from a variety of spaceborne sensors to provide scientists with a one-stop shop for land, lake and ice temperature data.

A new fire detection algorithm ALGO3, has been tested and validated for ATSR-1/-2 and AATSR. This extends the ATSR World Fire Atlas (WFA) to 21 years of night-time fire series.

Daugaard Jensen Gletscher, Greenland, is a large tidewater glacier covering an estimated 4% of the Greenland ice sheet. In this study the team investigate whether recent changes in the dynamics and mass balance of this sector of the Greenland ice sheet are reflected in the behaviour of this particular glacier.

The effects of climate change, population growth and economic development in the Mediterranean are posing a threat to the water supply in the region. As part of ESA's TIGER initiative, satellite data are supporting water management by identifying water resources.

Glaciers are one of the largest reservoirs of freshwater on our planet, and their melting or growing is one of the best indicators of climate change. However, knowledge of glacier change has been hampered by lack of data, especially for understanding regional behaviour.

The Rio+20 summit on promoting jobs, clean energy and a more sustainable use of our planet's resources closed today after three days of talks. During the summit, the role of Earth observation in sustainable development was highlighted.

The loss of the Envisat satellite is affecting services by Europe's Global Monitoring for Environment and Security programme. Efforts are being coordinated with other space agencies to fill some of the gaps, but the situation adds further urgency to launch the Sentinel missions.

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