Telefnica SA: Space technology against climate change

A problem that affects all countries and all economies. As the UN warns of changing weather systems, sea levels and extreme weather events, the scientific community is developing space technology to combat climate change.

During the first half of November 2021, the Conference of the Parties or COP26 under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, known as the Climate Summit, was held in Glasgow. Although it started with great ambitions, the drop in expectations at the negotiating table has been frustrating for much of society.

However, technology initiatives that various organizations have been undertaking for some time now, bring some hope to the plight of the planet. The persistent drought in Spain, for example, is just as worrying as that experienced in California. As has the loss of extensive forests due to fires in recent years in the US state, also linked to climate change.

Projects from NASA and private sector companies, such as AccuWeather, are applying the technology to study the risks of climate change. The objective of the consulting firm is to help predict adverse and extreme events, which over time become more frequent, minimizing business losses. In the meantime, the US Agency for Aerospace Research’s goal is to share accumulated knowledge for solutions that will contribute to better decision-making.

Studying the Earth’s Climate Systems from Space

As part of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), NASA scientists and California state officials work together. Trying to apply satellite data, new laser and radar technologies, and 3D imagery to Earth’s changing climate systems. The aim is to obtain sufficient data for scientific solutions and apply the expertise of space technologies against climate change and global warming.

California is primarily hit by these problems, which result in persistent droughts, unusually hot summers, and loss of vegetation due to an increase in destructive wildfires.

For these reasons, the Agency was study Mars, with the same intensity as our planet, to find solutions to our environmental problems. The Agency aims to get a more accurate picture of what is happening in the lithosphere, oceans and atmosphere. He will implement new tools to measure key aspects, such as the evolution of eternal snow and the state of groundwater.

New technologies at the service of water

The OpenET platform was created to provide farmers, water managers and all forestry professionals with evapotranspiration data collected by NASA for over 20 years. It is intended to accelerate optimization of water management.

Evapotranspiration is a fundamental measure of the amount of water resources used by a given agricultural crop. In this way, supply and demand can be balanced and significant savings achieved.

It’s not the only tool. The Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission is a satellite that measures lakes and rivers to better understand the water cycle for optimization.

Earth monitoring satellites

With the contribution of satellite data, new tools make it possible to monitor methane gas emissions in the atmosphere, the second cause of global warming. The Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite also collects information from other sources. This tool can also track atmospheric methane emissions from a refinery or animal farm.

This way, oil and gas industries can monitor their own environmental impactbe transparent about their oil and gas emissions and provide information to investors and users.

The NISAR satellite, equipped with two radars intended for the study of glaciers and volcanoes, is to be launched in 2022. It is designed to observe the evolution of the earth’s surface, as well as to allow the observation of forests and their evolutions from the carbon dioxide they contain, or other processes.

Space technology against climate change and risk prevention

Companies also have a great interest in knowing how climate change may affect them. With Climate Ready Risk Mitigation, created by AccuWeather, they can predict weather events for long-term business planning, as well as assess actions taken to avoid losses from weather-related natural disasters.

This tool also helps to identify specific negative risks. Help them increase security in the most vulnerable areas and the adaptability of the supply chain. The ultimate goal is to avoid millions of dollars in losses from persistent floods or droughts, which increase over time.

Undoubtedly, these technological initiatives offer hope for possible solutions to the climate crisis in which the planet is plunged.

About Lucille Thompson

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