27 October 2021

EuroGeographics contributes to COP26 call for governments to recognise value of location in climate change action

EuroGeographics pan-European datasets and their role in cross-border climate action are highlighted in a COP26 briefing paper calling on governments to recognise the value of official location data.

Applying Geospatial Information to Climate Challenges’ is published on behalf of delegates participating in the 2021 the Cambridge Conference organised by Ordnance Survey. As a member of the Conference International Advisory Group, the association for Europe’s National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registration Authorities (NMCAs) is a key contributor to the paper which sets out how official sources of geospatial data can support the United Nations four goals for COP26.

EuroGeographics has also signed the Cambridge Conference COP26 pledge, which commits to enabling nations to respond better to climate challenges by using trusted location data and to act now to become a sustainable organisation.

Léa Bodossian, Secretary General and Executive Director, EuroGeographics says: “It is so important that we can contribute to this pledge and paper, which includes case studies from our members in The Netherlands, Romania and United Kingdom.”

“Geospatial data is critical to decision makers for fighting climate change. The floods, in Belgium, Germany, and The Netherlands last summer, demonstrated tragically that there are cross-border aspects of climate change that need pan-European data. Today, challenges extend beyond national boundaries and knowing exactly where to target action and coordinate responses is essential, especially for monitoring, managing and measuring progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

“EuroGeographics promotes the value of official geospatial data and has created pan-European datasets which are harmonised and consistent across the continent.  I firmly believe that there are few things that are more powerful than location; it not only tells us where things happen but also provides the link between information and action.”

“Geospatial data is at the core of all environmental actions ‘on the ground’ and has a wider use in supporting policies. For example, geodata from our members is already being used to realise national climate targets and biodiversity plans, and deliver smarter, sustainable, intelligent transport that will use less fossil fuel. In France, the development of Lidar projects supports public policies, such as spatial planning, agriculture, forest, energy, and biodiversity, thus enabling precise targeting of climate action for maximum impact. This analytical aspect shows just how powerful geodata is for the public good.”

“The data and technology are available, what we now need is a commitment from decision-makers to invest in the collection, management, coordination and intelligent use of location data for the benefit of all. That’s why EuroGeographics is adding its voice to the call for all governments to recognise the value of location data and commit to creating appropriate data infrastructures to help propel us all to a sustainable, safer and fairer world.”

Case studies demonstrating the important role of EuroGeographics members are available at: https://bit.ly/MoreThanMaps

EuroGeographics is an international not-for-profit organisation (AISBL/ IVZW under Belgian Law. BCE registration:  833 607 112) and the membership association for the European National Mapping, Cadastral and Land Registry Authorities. It currently brings together members from 46 countries, covering the whole of geographical Europe.