Towards the Implementation of the GEOSS Water Strategy

Monday, 15 December 2014
Richard G Lawford, Morgan State University, Greenbelt, MD, United States and Douglas Cripe, GEO Group on Earth Observations, Geneva, Switzerland
Early in 2014, the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) adopted the GEOSS (Global Earth Observation System of Systems) Water Strategy as a potential guide for GEO-related water activities over the next decade. The Water Strategy outlines water-related issues and opportunities that fit within the general GEOSS framework that will be developed over the next decade (2016-2025). Implementation of a water strategy within the GEOSS framework can be complex because GEO Members and Participating Organizations contribute to GEO on a voluntary basis. In spite of these limitations efforts to consolidate an implementation plan have made significant advances during the past nine months.

Progress towards the final GEOSS Water Strategy Implementation Plan will be reported and gaps in the plan will be identified. Specific responses to the strategy will address the need for user engagement, the development of integrated of data products, model hierarchies and user support systems, and the research that will be needed to expand the capabilities of GEOSS and its water services. One challenge for the implementation plan involves building a framework from the diverse and wide range of activities and opportunities presented by GEO Members and Participating Organizations. The priority themes within the GEO Water Strategy are being used to provide more focus for new initiatives. New activities related to these priority areas involving projects that link water and other GEO Societal Benefit Areas, as well as initiatives related to the Water-Energy-Food nexus and the Sustainable Development Goals will be described. The presentation will also explore the needs and opportunities for new satellites and other observational and information technologies to advance the implementation of the GEOSS water strategy objectives.