NASA officials and representatives from more than 50 countries are meeting tomorrow in Brussels for the Third Earth Observation Summit. The purpose of the Summit is to bring together Earth observation resources to create a worldwide network to streamline the distribution of data, information products and services to society.

The summit opens tomorrow and will feature discussions to promote development of a comprehensive Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS). “NASA is privileged to offer the power of space-based observations to serve humanity,” said NASA’s Deputy Associate Administrator of the Science Mission Directorate, Dr. Ghassem Asrar. “Our commitment and that of the global community to increasing the scientific knowledge that is helping us better predict the Earth’s behavior is evident at an international gathering such as this one in Brussels,” he added.

Environmental monitoring is performed by many Earth observation systems, including a robust space-based component providing important environmental data, and ground, air and ocean based systems. Summit participants will discuss gaps in observations limiting understanding of the Earth’s complex systems. The GEOSS is intended to enhance data access and availability through cooperative worldwide data sharing.

NASA has conducted research and development of innovative space technologies to acquire Earth observations since the agency’s inception in 1958. NASA offers data and technologies that can improve future operational systems of the GEOSS. NASA research in Earth system science contributes to improved understanding and forecasts of ocean health, weather, earthquake, and climate change.

The Summit is during Earth and Space Week, a joint event of the European Union and European Space Agency, comprised of public exhibitions and activities.

For information about the Summit on the Web, visit: