21 November 2013 – A recently launched greenhouse gas emissions measurement service from Astrium, the world’s second largest space company, has been included in the Climate and Energy Action Hub, an interactive platform to encourage companies to collectively provide technologies, resources, services, business models and other types of support to scale up worldwide climate and energy efforts.
Astrium Services’ project is among nearly 20 collaborative projects included in the Action Hub, which was presented at the first ever Caring for Climate Business Forum, which took place 19-20 November 2013, at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties (COP) in Warsaw.
This unique commercially available service measures greenhouse gas emission levels from the ground, air and space, thereby achieving unprecedented accuracy for helping policymakers target specific areas and gauge the effectiveness of reduction policies.
Effectively monitoring and controlling greenhouse gas emissions is crucial for both reducing harmful emissions and promoting the use of green, low carbon technologies. Astrium Services’ participation in the Climate and Energy Action Hub will shine a spotlight on the importance of the company’s work for governments, cities and local authorities, which up until now only had access to statistical assessments of greenhouse gas concentrations.
By using Astrium Services’ greenhouse gas emissions measurement service, governments, city councils and local authorities will be able to complement their emissions reports such as those required by international legislation with independent data and, above all, to assess the effectiveness of their emission reduction policies.
Astrium Services tested out the first citywide greenhouse gas measurement demonstrator in London in the summer of 2012. The company successfully created emission maps based on data from satellites and aerial measurements, as well as from four ground sensors positioned around the city.
Experience gained from the London trial is now being tested out by applying the service to Paris and Rotterdam, where Astrium Services and its partners are once again measuring greenhouse gases (methane, carbon monoxide, and carbon dioxide) drawing on data from a network of sensors on the ground and from aerial campaigns.
Measurements in such trials are assimilated with an atmospheric model to create emissions maps detailing main sources and sinks. These measurements could have a significant impact on overall greenhouse gas emission reduction policy implementation given that cities are the largest sources of CO2 emissions.
Launched at the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit in September 2013, the Climate and Energy Action Hub was developed by Caring for Climate – which is led by the UN Global Compact, the UN Environment Programme and the secretariat of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
As a leading satellite system specialist, Astrium has extensive expertise and operational mission experience in the field of environmental and climate satellites. Astrium is studying MERLIN (Methane Remote Sensing Lidar Mission) the MicroCarb mission for CNES, the French space agency, and the CarbonSat mission, vying to be the eighth Earth Explorer mission of the European Space Agency’s Earth observation programme, with the aim of assessing CO2 fluxes between carbon sources and sinks and to improve our knowledge of carbon sinks.