The Contribution of Satellite EO to Hazards/Risks Mitigation: Enlarged Actions in the Frame of the CEOS Disaster Risk Management Initiative.
Bally, Philippe; Petiteville, Ivan
Satellite based geo-information can contribute to the entire cycle of risk management including mitigation, warning, response and recovery. Currently much of the focus of the EO sector activity is on the immediate response phase, during which rapid action can save lives and properties. Satellite EO is a recognised solution for enabling more efficient relief actions and supporting aid actors with objective and up to date information. This is primarily the result of initiatives such as the International Charter Space and Major Disasters, Sentinel-Asia and Europe’s GMES. Concerning other phases of the risk management cycle it is however widely accepted that increased efforts on risk reduction during the mitigation and warning phases of a disaster will save more lives and protect property by reducing the exposure of populations to the hazard. Reducing the severity of disasters requires the integration of observations, exploiting predictive modelling, and disseminating timely and accurate information needed by all actors involved in response and risk mitigation. The contribution of EO to the provision of refined risk assessment includes up to date localisation and characterization of the asset at risk; information to support prevention plan elaboration; supporting anticipation (for instance forecasting and early warning/alert) as well as crisis management operations (rescue, recovery) and to help better understand the resulting environmental damages and natural recovery mechanisms. At the 25th CEOS Plenary Meeting in Lucca, Italy, CEOS principals discussed the need to examine activities of member Agencies across the disaster cycle and ensure a balanced effort across the cycle and amongst the agencies. CEOS Principals proposed that an ad hoc team be formed to look at a more effective CEOS contribution, by assessing gaps, overlaps and consideration of the balance of effort. The CEOS Disaster ad hoc team was formed early in 2012, and met in Frascati in February and in Tokyo in April, as well as several times by teleconference. The Team currently includes representatives from the following agencies: ASI, CSA, CNES, DLR, ESA, EUMETSAT, JAXA, NASA, NOAA and USGS, as well as from the CEOS Executive Office/Deputy Executive Officer and the CEOS Systems Engineering Office (SEO). Following this a Study Consensus Report on CEOS Support to Disaster Risk Management (DRM) was prepared by the CEOS ad hoc Disaster Team that contains a set of recommendations aiming at increasing and strengthening the role of CEOS space agencies in all phases of DRM. In order to bring providers and users of EO together, a concerted effort from the satellite EO community is required to demonstrate the value of EO to DRM Users, in particular by presenting EO in a non-satellite centric, ‘integrated’ solution that shows how satellite EO can be an enabler, bringing innovative solutions to traditional DRM challenges. This will be done through the development of three thematic pilots for the areas of floods, seismic hazards and volcanoes.