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APRS 2016: nations discuss studying climate change through

Press Trust of India

Leaders from space agencies from across the globe today discussed the possibility of studying effects of climate change with the help of space technologies, during the on-going Asia-Pacific Remote Sensing Symposium (APRS) here.

Participants including nations like the US, Japan, China and France focused on the applications of remote sensing technologies for disaster mitigation and to better monitor global climate change, an official said.

"This is another activity where the space agencies are looking at how we can work together and help understand the climate variables. A certain number of climate variables are possible to be observed from space," NASA Administrator Charles Frank Bolden said.

"We are trying to look at how we can build systems which can enable such observations to be made in a systematic manner," he added. ISRO chief A S Kiran Kumar and Jean-Yves Le Gall, president of France's National Space Studies Centre (CNES) were also present at the event. Le Gall said of the 50 variables of climate change, 26 can be studied only from the space.

"After the success of COP 21 Paris we decided to continue to work with the help of space agencies. We have been working to explain the Heads of State in COP 21 Paris. Out of the 50 essential climate variables, which can describe what is climate and climate change, 26 of them can be observed only from space.

"And these are the satellites which show the evidence of global warming and emission of carbon dioxide. Now we are going one step ahead and will monitor the effects of carbon dioxide an green house effect from space," he said.

What we are doing is coordination in order to avoid duplication of work, Le Gall added.

Kiran Kumar said the purpose of the symposium is to make the decision makers aware that data is available on climate change and the steps they can take to counter it.

"There is data available. We are not guessing. We are producing more data for decision makers. That's the job of the (space) three agencies. We are the providers of data. All this time we know about the problem, but we are running out of time. What is critical is open access to data," Bolden said.

"It is important for any nation that is a space-faring nation...And has data and is willing to share that data (on climate change) in an international database," he added.

India is hosting Asia-Pacific Remote Sensing Symposium from April 4 to 7.


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