Where next?

Wow! What a year it has been so far. Apologies for not posting more here in 2020.


I went back and looked at the list of potential blog post topics that I had generated and so many seem inconsequential given the state of the world in this time of global pandemic. But then I thought that maybe now more than ever we need to be thinking about how Earth observation (EO) can  be effectively used.

As I write this, it is World Earth Day. Although, rightly, the focus is on the Covid-19 virus, there is also a growing choir of voices calling for the world to take stock about the type of society we want to return to. There have been so many storied in the press and social media about how Earth observation data can be and has been used to monitor huge changes in our environment during the lock-down period: from dispersed air pollution, to clearing waters, from reduced road traffic to counting aircraft held in stasis, from a reduction in the number of oil spills to preparatory studies for transitioning to greater solar energy production. 

As a proponent of the use of EO data I think that we (as a sector and community) need to make sure that we don’t fall into business as usual as the world comes out of lock-down. We should look to develop a global sector that is stronger and more focused, with realistic but useful solutions, that are sustainable in the long term. New ways of working (technical and commercial) need to be embraced to make the sector and society more resilient in the light of any future crises.