Did you know?
Canada's OSIRIS instrument has been measuring the ozone layer every day since 2001. The daily, monthly and annual data shows that the ozone layer has been stabilizing gradually since the 1987 Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, one of the most successful international agreements to date.
Climate change is one of the greatest threats of our time. Some of the most alarming effects are seen in the Arctic, where higher temperatures are impacting local ecosystems and communities. By improving our understanding of climate processes and impacts, our ability to model and predict these changes will improve. Satellites are valuable tools for studying various aspects of the Earth and atmosphere:
- land resources
- glaciers and snow cover
- soil moisture
- ocean processes
- complex cloud and precipitation processes
- the concentration of ozone, aerosols, carbon monoxide and other significant molecules in the atmosphere
Satellite data contributes to international research and efforts to address this global issue.
Did you know?
Over one billion people worldwide do not have access to safe drinking water. Satellites like Canada's RADARSAT-2 can help locate and manage ground water sources.
The Earth's ecosystems are essential to life as we know it, contributing to some of our most basic needs like clean air, water and food. Using satellites, we can monitor changes and promote the responsible use of land and natural resources to protect our ecosystems.
- Monitoring the state and health of our forests and national parks
- Discerning the changing conditions of agricultural lands
- Mapping geological features and determining environmental impacts of mineral exploitation
- Identifying and managing various water resources, including ground water
- Detecting changes over time in Canada's coastal areas, wetlands and wildlife habitats
Satellites are also useful for understanding and protecting Canadian biodiversity. Remote sensing techniques provide important data on wildlife and habitats, and GPS devices can be used to track different species.
Did you know?
The smoke from a forest fire increases carbon monoxide (CO) levels in the atmosphere and affects air quality. Since CO is transported in the atmosphere, the negative impact on air quality can spread beyond the local area. For example, Canada's MOPITT instrument measured the CO produced by major forest fires in Northern Canada in June/July 2015 as the CO travelled through different parts of Canada and the United States.
Satellites are helping specialists monitor and study air, water and soil quality. This supports various programs to manage pollutants and reduce toxic waste that is harmful to the environment and Canadians.
Satellites can be used to detect pollution on water and land. They can identify oil spills and areas that have been contaminated by mining activities.
They can also help us measure pollution in the atmosphere. For example, from space we are able to collect information on the global distribution of carbon monoxide and distinguish between natural and human sources of pollution.
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