Satellite remote sensing data can provide crucial information for managing natural disasters. How can developing countries access and make use of these data? And what must policymakers do to prepare?
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IMD provides weather bulletins and warnings against extreme events like cyclones. Cyclone warnings include weather outlooks for the North Indian Ocean and maps of both the observed and predicted cyclone track. The IMD website also gives background details on individual projects, including the department's cyclone monitoring and warning dissemination systems. Information on the expected impact of cyclones of varying intensities — and recommendations for mitigation — is provided. The site also links to archives of satellite and rainfall data.
The NNRMS is an inter-agency network for integrated natural resource management in India. It uses remote sensing data combined with other data to provide inventories of natural resources for applications such as infrastructure development, environmental monitoring and disaster management support.
NNRMS publishes information about the country's earth observation satellites, overviews of its work and a biannual bulletin with news and information about key projects.
NASA's Landsat satellites provide one of the most important remote sensing data archives for a host of environmental applications, including disaster monitoring. They have been collecting multispectral data at a moderate spatial resolution for over 35 years.
Last year (2008), NASA made access to all Landsat data free. The website links to the free data and provides information on how to use them as well as a selection of images, tutorials and educational resources.
NASA's 'hurricane resource page' provides the latest storm images and data available from NASA together with a tropical weather outlook for the Atlantic Basin. NASA has also published educational tools, including posters and classroom activities that are free for anyone to use. The website includes background information on hurricanes such as fact sheets, lists of satellite instruments used for hurricane monitoring and explanations of how hurricanes form and develop.