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Tapping into Earth observation data for international development

11 December 2014

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A new initiative brings ESA and the Asian Development Bank together to exploit satellite Earth observation data for sustainable growth.

The Song Bung River flows down from the Annamite Mountain Range before reaching the more populous coastal areas of central Vietnam. In addition to being a source of drinking water, the river is also a potential source of energy: a hydropower plant is being built to meet the country's increasing power demand.

Satellite data are being used to monitor the stress that the filled reservoir exerts on the dam and the overall environmental impact of the power plant and its reservoir on the surrounding area.

The presence of a nature reserve near the new reservoir makes it especially important to monitor environmental changes and, eventually, the implementation of project safeguards to, for example, avoid illegal logging and the inappropriate usage of new access roads.

This is just one of many Earth observation-support projects in a new collaboration between ESA and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), called Earth Observation for a Transforming Asia Pacific, or EOTAP.

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