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UK, Australia Use Space Technology to Protect Against Climate Change

By | November 25, 2019
UK Minister Visits Site of Sutherland Spaceport

Artist’s rendition of Sutherland Spaceport. Photo: UK Space Agency

The U.K. Space Agency is looking for project ideas, to be delivered through U.K. aid, that use the data collected by satellites to improve decision-making for disaster risk reduction, ocean monitoring, mangrove mapping, and maritime management. This will also see Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, work with the U.K. Space Agency and invite U.K. organizations and other international partners to work with them to scope projects designed to deliver sustainable benefits to Small Island Developing States in the Pacific.

The work will build on those systems already under way to help prevent and plan for disasters that are a consequence of rising sea levels and climate change. This follows a recent statement of intent between the UK Space Agency and Australian Space Agency to establish a “Space Bridge” to increase strategic collaboration and lay the foundations for swift negotiations for space-related opportunities under any potential future trading arrangements.

“We were the first major country to sign our commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050 into law, and next year the UK will be hosting the UN’s climate conference, COP26,” U.K. Science Minister Chris Skidmore said. “We are world leading in our expertise in satellite technology, and are seeking to become the first country in Europe which will be able to perform both horizontal and vertical launches into space – this fund expands on our growing commitment to become one of the world’s leading space nations.”