When a disaster occurs, situational awareness is imperative in decision making for response and emergency support. Information is needed on the scale of damage in an area and the location of the affected population, along with logistical information such as the location of hospitals, undamaged roads and bridges and communication infrastructure. In the days and weeks following a disaster, information concerning the international agencies and NGOs operating in the area and the distribution of resources is needed to ensure aid reaches those who need it most and efforts are not duplicated, wasting precious time. Disaster managers and responders require timely and accurate information to understand and communicate the situation on the ground to others.
UNOOSA took up the annually rotating position of official Chair of the International Working Group on Satellite based Emergency Mapping (IWG-SEM) at the Group's meeting today in Bonn, Germany.
UNOOSA took up the annually rotating position of official Chair of the International Working Group on Satellite based Emergency Mapping (IWG-SEM) at the Group's meeting on 29 May 2015 in Bonn, Germany.
UNOOSA becomes new chair of International Working Group on Satellite based Emergency Mapping
Currently, there are 10 satellites dedicated to monitoring rainfall, but soon this number is likely to fall: four satellites have already passed their design life and others will follow soon. This will strongly affect flood management globally, shows a study published at Environmental Research Letter.
The same day a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal, digital volunteers from all over the world began to map the affected areas. Based on data and satellite imagery the created maps help first responders, before they even hit the ground, on search, rescue and relief operations.