In support of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP15) which took place in Copenhagen last December 2009, the European Environment Agency hosted the 'Bend the Trend' event on 13 December to provide a global climate networking platform and premiere the screening of the new 'Environmental Atlas of Europe'.
The 'Environmental Atlas of Europe', a joint project of the European Environment Agency (EEA), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the European Space Agency (ESA), is a series of short films showing the significance of environmental change depicted in comparisons of stunning satellite images through the years and the different ways people are responding to these changes.
ESA provided a variety of up-to-date satellite images and products from various European satellites. These range from ship ice roads in the Baltic Sea to the river systems of Albania, from a gigantic plankton bloom off the Irish coast to the reduction of agricultural land in south-east Georgia. Each of these images will help to make the viewer understand the environmental, scientific and political issues of today. Â
It is important for various institutions and actors to work together to team efforts to match space-based data with local, or in-situ, data. Combining space-based measurements with in-situ measurements and other sources like historic weather records and maps help to understand better climate change and to raise awareness.
EEA is associated with the service development activities in the GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) programme. GMES is a joint programme run by the European Commission and ESA to develop European Earth-observation capacities and monitor climate change. ESA is responsible for the space component of GMES, and EEA is responsible for the in-situ component.Â