As soon as the charter receives an alert, its 9 signatory space agencies* task their satellites and domain experts to deliver urgent satellite imagery to disaster-affected nations. “This imagery allows emergency response teams to assess the damage and locate survivors who need help, adds André Husson.
Events for which the charter has been pressed into action this year include the violent earthquake in China in May, Hurricane Gustav in the West Indies and more recently floods in Vietnam. In the last 8 years, the charter has been activated 198 times. “The charter is being activated more and more often, once a week on average,” notes André Husson.
“The idea is appealing, as it would raise the charter’s profile,” says André Husson. “But we need to check certain legal implications first, particularly with regard to ownership of imagery.”
* The 9 charter members are ESA, CNES (France), CSA (Canada), NOAA/USGS (USA), ISRO (India), CONAE (Argentina), JAXA (Japan), BNSC/DMC (United Kingdom) and CNSA (China)
ASC Website(Canadian Space Agency)
ISRO Website(Indian Space Research Organisation)
NOAA Website (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
CONAE Website (Argentina Space Agency)
JAXA Website (Japan Aerospace eXploration Agency)
BNSC Website (British National Space Center)