Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union

Quantifying the value of environmental information to society



Socio-Economic Benefits From the Use of Earth Observation; Ispra, Italy, 11–13 July 2011 Many large space-or ground-based Earth observation systems, such as Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) and Landsat, are justified by citing their benefits to scientific knowledge and their impacts on government decisions about environmental issues. These justifications attempt to quantify the lives saved, losses avoided, or economic benefits gained. Each justification is made on an ad hoc basis, and the approach used in one case rarely applies to another. In July 2011 a workshop was held at the European Commission Joint Research Centre in Italy to consider whether broadly applicable methodologies could be developed that could be consistently used for assessing the value of large-scale observation and information systems.