Photo credit  |  ESA Copernicus Sentinel 2

Space4Climate @ COP26

COP26  |  19 August, 2021  |  Reading time: 4 minutes
Space4Climate is looking forward to being involved in COP26 – being held in the UK for the first time in Glasgow in November.

Representing the UK’s Earth observation and space community we are collaborating with our members and national and international organisations to showcase the UK’s world-leading expertise in climate science and climate services at the global climate summit.

The group is chaired by the UK Space Agency and hosted by the National Centre of Earth Observation (NCEO) and we have close working links to UK Government ministries and departments.

Our members will join leading scientific, policy, industry and government organisations from around the world at events before and during COP26, and afterwards in Presidency and legacy activities. We are also preparing a timetable of key events and discussions leading up to and during COP26.

We will focus on the vital role that UK expertise plays in gathering Earth observation data, processing it and supporting its application in developing climate technology for innovative climate services and informing climate action now and in a climate resilient future. We will be showcasing the breadth and depth of UK skills, technology and data to audiences in plain language to engage the COP26 audiences in Earth observation and the science underpinning evidence-informed climate action.

Space4Climate members span government, industry and academia, working in partnership to support and raise the profile of the UK’s world-leading climate science and services community.

Showcasing Earth observation for climate science and climate data

We represent the whole value chain of climate data from space – from building satellite missions that will gather the most accurate climate data, to data analytics that underpin crucial and effective climate decisions, to innovative climate services and real-world case studies that demonstrate the difference UK space-enable technology is making to communities around the globe, as well as to the UK economy.

Our activities enable a seamless supply chain of climate data from space assets; helping to identify end user requirements and facilitate trusted climate services development to meet these, promoting global economic and societal benefit.

We support the creation of a thriving environment in which to grow the use of Earth observation expertise for the production of trusted climate services to monitor and address climate change.

Our key message for COP26 is:

The UK space sector is at the forefront of global efforts to create and use trusted satellite data for climate action for all

We do this through:

  • Climate Science – research into understanding our world from space and how it is changing, the fundamental importance being to learn what is happening to our world, and to be able to manage the impacts.
  • Climate Technology – the instrumentation and infrastructure to objectively monitor and measure Earth from space, enabling consistent and innovative data analytics, quality assurance and capacity-building.
  • Climate Action – enabling people to utilise data from space, to make it visible and meaningful through real-world, useful climate services for all.

The role of Space4Climate in tackling climate change

Satellite data is crucial to addressing, informing, measuring and monitoring progress in meeting the challenge of climate change. It  provides information on past or future changes in ‘typical’ environmental conditions and helps in understanding climate variability – what is ‘normal’, as well as how this is changing – vital information for climate services.  Climate data from space also provides decision support and monitoring services that can help to improve our environment and our lives – ranging from the design of our cities, transport and buildings to the quality of the food on our plates.

As a group, Space4Climate members offer end-to-end capability – from design, manufacture and satellite mission development to data analytics and integration of climate information into immediately actionable decision support services.

We collaborate in delivering, sustaining and making use of trusted climate intelligence from space.

Our specialist task groups, drawn from across the group, brings UK experts from academia, industry and the third sector to explore and develop prototype climate data products to meet specific challenges – such as restoring and maintain peatlands, how data can support the green finance sector in making climate-informed disclosures and decisions, making the best use of the Climate Change Initiative (CCI) datasets and quality assurance for the EO climate services market.