The 70th International Astronautical Congress – IAC 2019, to take place from 21 – 25 October in Washington D.C., United States will feature on Wednesday 23 October 2019, from 19:00 – 19:45, a Highlight Lecture by Neil Jacobs, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), on the topic of ‘Monitoring Coastal Waters from Space – Highlighting the Chesapeake Bay Region: Dramatic Advances Enable Better Understanding and Protection of these Vital Ecosystems, and their Immense Coastal Populations and Infrastructure‘.
Earth’s coasts play an ever-increasing role in the economy of nations, ecology of oceans and health of both. Nearly 40% of the world’s human population lives within 100 km of a coast, and coastal waters are critically important for fisheries, aquaculture, recreation, transportation and tourism. Yet, the coastal waters are under severe stress. This meeting of fresh water, salt water and land thus becomes a vital junction of ecologic and economic policy, public safety and climate. All must be balanced for a healthy ecosystem, economy and society. Advances in our ability to monitor coastal areas from space, and effectively use that information for policy making, public safety, infrastructure protection, coastal and ecosystem management is critical to achieve the healthy balance. Highlighting the Chesapeake Bay area surrounding Washington D.C., this session will show how Earth Observations from space are advancing to meet information needs to address coastal challenges for societal benefit.