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In celebration of World Mother Earth Day, the Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE) presented a proposal to mitigate deforestation through the use of technology and spatial information generated through satellite images to the «GEO-Google Earth Engine (GEE) License Program ”.

The initiative was sent to the Secretariat of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) as part of a program to support 25 projects of member countries of this entity that use data from land analysis in conjunction with the GEE tool. The objective is to attack global problems related to climate change, sustainable development, disaster risk reduction, among others.

The Minister of Environment and Energy, Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, indicated that through the National Center for Geoenvironmental Information (CENIGA), the institution presented the proposal, framed in the activities carried out in the country in the construction of the National Monitoring System for Land Use and Coverage and Ecosystems (SIMOCUTE).

He explained that the proposal “Tackling deforestation and forest degradation in Costa Rica using Google Earth Engine” is focused on improving the capacities of national institutions to estimate deforestation and forest degradation in Costa Rica using satellite information and the image processing tool by Google Earth Engine medium.

In addition, it seeks to attack the problem of deforestation by developing an early warning system that incorporates this technology, as well as improving estimates of forest restoration in the country and the carbon emissions related to these activities.

Rafael Monge, director of CENIGA explained that Costa Rica has made important advances in the development of its National System for Monitoring Land Use and Coverage and Ecosystems (SIMOCUTE), which has allowed it to reach a level of specialization.

“In that contact, the project aims to improve the methodologies available worldwide to detect deforestation and forest degradation using satellite images and different technological tools,” said Monge.

He added that the initiative will generate better algorithms to make estimates of the change detection maps, proposing the development of an early warning system, which allows generating information that can be used to take rapid actions that contribute to stopping and preventing related illegal activities. deforestation.

Support for. The proposed country has the support of the National Meteorological Institute (IMN), the National REDD + Secretariat, the National Fund for Forest Financing (FONAFIFO), the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC), the Secretariat for Sectoral Planning of the Environment (SEPLASA), the Geographical Institute National, PRIAS / CENAT Laboratory, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and Silvacarbon.

The selected projects will benefit from access to unlimited licenses for the GEE platform for two years and technical support from the EO Data Science organization.

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