EuroGeographics showcases value of official national geospatial data in Copernicus Services


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Land Monitoring and Emergency Management are among the Copernicus Services benefitting from the strengthened partnership between providers of official geospatial data and the European Environment Agency (EEA).

The framework agreement between the EEA and EuroGeographics, which represents Europe’s National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registry Authorities, streamlines the licensing process to improve access to authoritative information. In doing so, it is increasing the number of datasets available via the Copernicus Reference Data Access (CORDA) database.

Four case studies from Albania, Spain, Germany and Iceland have now been published by EuroGeographics showing the value of official geospatial information for assessing flood and erosion risk, preventing the impact of extreme weather, and in contributing to the new European baseline for monitoring Land Cover and Land Use.

Angela Baker, Head of Partnerships and Sustainability, EuroGeographics said: “The Copernicus Services require reliable and accurate in-situ data to produce and validate their products. The new framework extends our agreement enabling the Copernicus Emergency Mapping Service to use members’ authoritative data to include the Copernicus Land Monitoring Service (CLMS) and the Copernicus Security Service (CSS).”

“Copernicus Services’ also have access to administrative boundary data through our agreement with Eurostat, as well as pan-European topographic, gazetteer and imagery datasets and services delivered through the Open Maps for Europe interface and the Open Maps For Europe 2 project (OME2).”

Jose Miguel Rubio Iglesias, responsible for the Copernicus In Situ component EEA added: “To meet end user requirements regarding data content and quality, Copernicus Services need access to open, up-to-date, and harmonised geospatial information across Europe. Data produced by the members of EuroGeographics is therefore key to its success.”

“Typically, geospatial data is relevant for all the different services, but we have identified three key services which require geospatial data: the Copernicus Emergency Service and its rapid mapping, and risk and recovery mapping components; the Copernicus Land Monitoring Service; and the Copernicus Security Service which supports, inter alia, the EU External Action Service.”

“As one of the Entrusted Entities implementing the Copernicus Land Monitoring Service (CLMS), the EEA is developing the CLC+ Suite of products. Authoritative data from NMCAs is also an important input to the CLC+ Backbone (the geospatial component of the CLC+ Suite of products) to complement the production and updating of satellite-data derived land cover data.”

“By working closely together, we can improve the use of authoritative data and services by Copernicus and ensure National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registration Authorities are recognised for their essential contributions.”

The case studies focus on:

Albania where detailed elevation data provided to the Copernicus Emergency Management Service by the State Authority for Geospatial Information (ASIG), Albania was essential for assessing flood risk and its economic impact in the Drin river basin.

Germany where authoritative digital elevation and land cover data provided by the Federal Agency for Cartography and Geodesy (BKG), Germany is being used to better understand, predict and prevent future flooding caused by extreme weather.

Spain where transportation, Land Use and Land Cover data provided to the Copernicus Emergency Management Service by the National Geographic Institute of Spain played a key role in evaluating the impact of the 2022 Ceuta wildfire. It was also used to assess the risk of soil erosion in more than 130 hectares of forest in the Spanish autonomous city which is located on Africa’s north coast.

Iceland where the National Land Survey is contributing to the new European baseline for monitoring Land Cover and Land Use by providing access to geospatial data consisting of land cover and land use data, contour lines and height points, structures, boundaries, transportation, hydrology, coastal line, surface and place names.

The case studies are available online.

The OME2 project is co-funded by the European Union. It is being delivered by a consortium comprising: EuroGeographics, the not-for-profit membership association for Europe’s National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registration Authorities; National Geographic Institute, Belgium; National Institute of Geographic and Forest Information, France; Hellenic Cadastre; General Directorate for the Cadastre, Spain; and Cadastre, Land Registry and Agency, The Netherlands.

Open Maps For Europe was co-financed by the Connecting Europe Facility of the European Union and ended in 2022. It was coordinated by EuroGeographics, the voice of European National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registration Authorities, in partnership with the National Geographic Institute (NGI) Belgium.

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