The Price of Life: A Look at the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity

EarthzineBiodiversity, Economy, Ecosystems Theme, Original, Themed Articles

Aerial view of Watsonville, CA and the agricultural areas surrounding the town Public Domain US Army Corps of Engineers Digital Visual Library.Scientists, citizens, non-governmental organizations and governments need to find a shared language. As the language of the market system, economic valuation can offer common communication that creates a bridge between different fields of work. A synthesis called TEEB outlines an approach to environmental valuation and offers recommendations on how decision-makers can use the plan as an informative tool.

The Challenges Of Water And Climate In Asia

EarthzineArticles, Climate, Disasters, Earth Observation, Economy, Ecosystems Theme, Feature, Featured Person, Millennium Development Goals, OpEd, Original, Sections, Themed Articles, Water

cropped image of Arjun ThapanMr. Arjun Thapan is Special Senior Advisor to the Asian Development Bank (ADB) President for Infrastructure and Water. ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. In this opinion essay, he discusses Asia’s impending water crisis, exacerbated not just by the environmental consequences of economic and population growth, but now also by climate change.

Identifying And Quantifying The Benefits Of GEOSS

EarthzineArticles, Earth Observation, Economy, GEO/GEOSS News, Original, Sections

Drawing of the Galileo satellite. credit ESA

Image of the EuroGEOSS logoThe European Commission sponsored project ‰ÛÏGlobal Earth Observation ‰ÛÒ Benefit Estimation: Now, Next and Emerging‰Û (GEOBENE) has developed methodologies and analytical tools to assess the societal benefit areas (SBAs) of GEO in the domains of: Disasters, Health, Energy, Climate, Water, Weather, Ecosystems, Agriculture and Biodiversity. This article presents several of these overarching methodologies as a contribution to the ongoing effort to improve GEOSS, and looks to the future via the EuroGEOSS Project.

GEO needs stronger political and financial support to succeed

EarthzineArticles, Earth Observation, Economy, GEO/GEOSS News, Original, People, Politics, Sections

Image of Doctor Roy GibsonDr. Roy Gibson, first Director General of the European Space Agency and the first Director General of the British National Space Centre, made a strong argument for the need of governments to give priority financial and political support to GEO and GEOSS as speaker at the GEO-IGOS Symposium in Washington DC on 19 November 2009. His adapted speech from that event and a biographical introduction are reprinted here.

Kuruom vidyalaya: the Power of One in a Billion

EarthzineEconomy, Education, Feature, Featured Person, Millennium Development Goals, Original, People, Sections

Portrait of Bal Ram Singh, Ph.D.In Korown, an Uttar Pradesh India farming village where little has changed for hundreds of years, a 21st century school opened its doors for the first time in July to 100 girls and boys in grades 1-4, 6, and 7. Kuruom vidyalaya is the bricks-and-mortar embodiment of the Hindu goddess Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge, and testimony to one man’s spirit and commitment. That man is Bal Ram Singh, Ph.D., 51, once a child of the village and now a successful biophysical chemist at a U.S. university (University of Massachusetts Dartmouth) and director of its Center for Indic Studies, who built the school himself without government assistance. Deeply engaged as a Hindu, a family man, a professor, research scientist, and a U.S. citizen, he is also determined to prove that “one little man” can change the status-quo in India for the better.