Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

20 years of Copernicus - the EU's leading provider of Earth observation data

20 years of Copernicus - the EU's leading provider of Earth observation data
Published on: 20/06/2018
Commissioners Elżbieta Bieńkowska (Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs) and Tibor Navracsics (responsible for the Commission's Joint Research Centre) are in Baveno, Italy, today and tomorrow to mark the twentieth anniversary of Copernicus. In 1998, a manifesto was signed in Baveno proposing to create a European environment monitoring programme. Today, Copernicus is a symbol of Europe's space power.

The seven satellites currently in orbit give access to tens of terabytes of free data every day which is used to help save lives at sea, improve our response to natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, forest fires or floods, and allow farmers to better manage their crops. Space is an enabler of the data and app economy. That is why Commissioner Bieńkowska will announce the launch of the Copernicus Data and Information Access Services (DIAS) – industry-led platforms to increase data access by innovative start-ups and other users who will be able to discover, process and download data more easily and less costly. Commissioners Bieńkowska and Navracsics will then visit the Ispra site of the JRC, which supports the Copernicus programme and provides products and services to policy makers based on data generated by satellites. Copernicus covers six thematic areas: land monitoringmarine monitoringatmosphere monitoringclimate changeemergency management response and security. Under the €16 billion EU Space Programme beyond 2020, the Commission proposes to expand these existing services to meet emerging needs, such as CO2 monitoring and polar missions to help fight climate change.

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