Efforts to tackle global warming received a boost today with the successful launch of a Japanese satellite, the first to monitor greenhouse gases from space.
The Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite “IBUKI” (or “GOSAT” in its English-language acronym) is the first satellite to observe greenhouse gases and monitor changes in the effects they cause. It was launched from the island of Tanegashima, in southern Japan, by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), a key partner in addressing disaster risk reduction and environmental issues for the United Nations’ Economic Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
Using a high precision sensor, “IBUKI” can measure from outer space the concentration of greenhouse gases throughout almost the entire surface of the earth, including large regions where data was never collected before. The obtained data will be used to determine the emission, transportation and absorption of these gases with a view to eventually contributing to controlling global warming.
Covering every region in the world, the satellite will play a fundamental role in monitoring an increase or decrease of greenhouse gases. After the operations start, the data will be obtained every three days from the observation points and distributed to scientists free of charge.
56,000 global observation points will be available thanks to “IBUKI”.