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Editorial, Issue 4

Thanks to your involvement the year 2005 has been very fruitful for our association and for the development of Earth Observation in Europe.
After a successful organisation of our industrial workshop in the
Earth and Space Week in Brussels in February, the year has been a very
active one with strong involvement in several events as well as with
contribution to numerous policy debates. Moreover EARSC has seen the
largest increase in membership in our history, with our association
being today seventy members strong and growing.
The year has also been marked by a narrow interaction with the EU as well as with ESA. The eoVox
initiative with ESA, launched in the end of 2005 and described on our
web site is expected to be another breakthrough to improve even further
the representation of European Earth Observation Industry in a variety
of contexts.
As in 2005, one of the main challenges in
2006 will be the continuous development of GMES and GEOSS. At the last
ESA Ministerial Conference in December 2005, delegations have given
financial backing to the first segment of deployment of GMES Sentinels
satellites. It generates strong hopes in the EO community at large, a
community which now awaits from the EU the sizeable commitment which
will really make GMES a flagship of Europe.
The Ministerial Conference was also
successful in securing the next slice of the Earth Observation Envelope
Program (EOEP3), the essential scientific upstream component of Earth
Observation. As far as the downstream EO Market Development (EOMD)
component, Industry reaffirms its support for its continued financing
on a level similar to its EOEP2 level.
We thank you again for your support and
hope to see you at our next EARSC Workshop which will take place on
March 20th , 2006, in Paris and which will be dedicated to looking into
Industry Role to Foster GMES Socio – Economic Benefits”.
On behalf of our Board of Directors I would like to wish all our members a successful year.
Paul Kamoun
EARSC Chairman