TJ11.3 NASA Earth Observations for Health and Air Quality Applications

Monday, 7 January 2013: 4:30 PM
Room 6B (Austin Convention Center)
John A. Haynes, NASA, Washington, DC; and S. M. Estes

Domestic and International officials have increasingly recognized links between environment and health. The World Health Organization (WHO) states “environmental hazards are responsible for as much as a quarter of the total burden of disease worldwide.” Recognizing such links, the 2007 National Research Council report Earth Science and Applications from Space: National Imperatives for the Next Decade (commonly referred to as the Decadal Survey) in its “vision for the future” of Earth Science and applications, specifically called for “a vision that includes advances in fundamental understanding of the Earth system and increased application of this understanding to serve the nation and the people of the world” and goes on to point out the use of satellite data for “targeted interventions to reduce vulnerability to health risks, and enhanced knowledge of human health-environment interactions”. NASA maintains a diverse constellation of Earth observing research satellites and sponsors research in developing satellite data applications across a wide spectrum of areas including environmental health; infectious disease; air quality standards, policies, and regulations; and the impact of climate change on health and air quality. Successfully providing predictions with the accuracy, latency, and specificity required by decision makers will require advancements over current capabilities in a number of interrelated areas. These areas include observations, modeling systems, forecast development, application integration, and the research to operations transition process. NASA has been a primary partner with Federal, state, local, and international operational agencies and organizations over the past twelve years in these areas.

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