Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union

Free exchange of weather data threatened


  • Anonymous


The more than century-old tradition of the free exchange of international meteorological data may be in jeopardy because of increasing anticompetitive measures that violate “free market” concepts, some American scientists worry.

Competition from private weather companies has caused many European countries to encode information from weather satellites and license it to industry. But now mounting economic pressures for some governments to recoup costs have led to new proposals to further restrict the availability of data, which until recent years had mainly been limited by telecommunication system capability. Cost recovery policies have been introduced in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Finland, Ireland, and Denmark, among others, and by facilities multilaterally supported by the European Community.