Space applications related to Earth observation, telecommunications and global navigation can play a vital role in supporting disaster risk reduction, response and recovery efforts; by providing accurate and timely information for decision-makers. For example, Earth observation can be used to elaborate hazard, exposure and risk maps; as well as to map areas which have been affected by floods, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, forest fires, landslides and other natural hazards. In a complementary fashion, satellite telecommunication offers the possibility of transmitting tsunami warnings very quickly from one continent to another, in addition to other relevant information. Global navigation satellite systems are contributing to an improved understanding of the relative motion of tectonic plates, and to the delivery of humanitarian assistance to areas affected by disasters; through the provision of coordinates of shelters in areas affected by disasters.
Below you will find information on those space-based mechanisms established by space agencies from various countries and services; on their application, sources and access options. It is worth noting that this information covers the full disaster management cycle, all Earth-directed space technology, and all types of major natural or man-made hazards.
The Emergency Mechanisms section provides an overview of the most relevant mechanisms, such as the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters". The understanding of these mechanisms, and their procedures and workflows, are a prerequisite for ensuring rapid access to products and other relevant information generated by these mechanisms.
In the Space Application Matrix, the user is able to find guidance on space applications and how disaster management can benefit from their use. Scientific/technical articles, guides and case studies outline the underlying principles, methodical workflows, best practices, advantages, restrictions, and accessibility of data and services that are offered to inform the user in decision making processes.