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18 september 2007

Groene satelieten wegbezuinigd

By Annalee Newitz, AlterNet, September 18, 2007

...satellite and sensor networks are some of the most powerful tools for studying the way humans are impacting climate change. They allow scientists to create maps showing how land use affects climate, as well as how chemical emissions are linked to rainfall, water levels, temperature fluctuations and ozone depletion.

And now, according to a distressing report last week from the U.S. Climate Change Science Program, the government is cutting funds to the tools that climate researchers need most. In this report, researchers write that the National Polar-Orbiting Environmental Satellite System has been severely downsized, "eliminating several key climate instruments," while rollout on four new systems for measuring atmospheric changes has been delayed or cancelled. At the same time, the government has failed to maintain observatories on the ground devoted to climate change and is scaling back on an ocean climate sensor system called the Tropical Atmosphere Ocean buoy array.


Just as news of this report was breaking, New York environmental group Blacksmith Institute released a list of the 10 most polluted places on Earth.


As climate sensor networks decay, and green satellites die, so too does the hope that we can build a better climate model.

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