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GEO 2017-2019 Work Programme


Geo Vision for Energy (GEO-VENER)

Activity ID: 121


Energy is an essential factor for sustainable development and poverty eradication. Renewable energy (RE) can enable the development of sustainable local sources of energy with the least negative impact on the environment and human health. Nevertheless, it is estimated that in 2015 still about 2.8 billion people have no access to modern energy services and over 1.1 billion do not have electricity. Furthermore, around 4.3 million people are dying prematurely every year due to indoor pollution resulting from cooking and heating with unsustainable fuels, as well as billions of people affected by air pollution from inefficient and dirty power plants. The challenge lies in finding ways to reconcile the necessity and demand for modern and sustainable energy services with its impact on the environment and the global natural resource base in order to ensure that sustainable development goals are realized.

Given the considerable attention being paid to establishing green sustainable economies, GEO’s efforts in the Energy and minerals resources Societal Benefit Area should be strategically positioned to make a significant impact globally by enhancing the ongoing activities and increasing linkages with sustainable development efforts.

GEO Vision for Energy (GEO-VENER) will contribute to the Energy and Minerals resources SBA and will start by focusing on RE. Its goals are the availability and long-term acquisition of data from satellite and in-situ instruments and models to make possible the effective deployment, operation and maintenance of RE systems and their integration in the grid. No specific Earth observation (EO) system or program dedicated to RE exists, but the RE Domain is using EO systems and programs dedicated to others domains to extract relevant RE information. Nevertheless EO data or information sets dedicated to RE exist, and a lot of resources are available within GEOSS (from Data Core resources to web services all compliant with the GCI). Considering the SDGs in the Energy domain and the GEOSS targets, GEO-VENER will:

  • Support the development of Earth observation products and services for energy management;
  • Consider information to support end-to-end energy production systems (including planning, generation, transmission, distribution, and integrated operations);
  • Promote collaboration between users and providers of Earth observation and information;
  • Encourage the use of Earth observation and information for informed renewable energy policy planning in developing and developed countries.

Activities for the period

A set of activities already exists and will pursue their activities in 2017. The activities described hereafter are:

  • The EU H2020 ConnectinGEO project (2015-2017) has an activity related to identification of essential variables for renewable energies, gap analysis and industrial challenges on in-situ measurements (;
  • The European Network of Earth Observation Networks (ENEON), part of the ConnectinGEO project will try to establish its activities on the long-run. Renewable energies are linked with the involvement of the private energy sector. Activities of the GEO Energy activities will contribute to ENEON;
  • The-operational COPERNICUS Atmosphere Monitoring Service for Solar Radiation ( will serve the solar community;
  • A Sensor Observation Service capacity for the in-situ measurement for the Energy SBA has been established. This component ( has been added to the community portal. This Spatial Data infrastructure is operated by MINES ParisTech and will support GI-10;
  • The launch of the call for project within EU H2020 ERA PLANET project is expected for 2016 with beginning of activities end of 2016, beginning of 2017. This project is a major contribution from Europe to GEOSS, with specific inputs for Energy within the Strand 2 – Resource efficiency and environmental management;
  • Activities of the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Energy & Climate Working Group to enhance communication between data providers at US Federal agencies and renewable energy decision makers;
  • Continuation of the compilation of resources related to energy within the catalogue of the community portal;
  • Improvement of the Global Atlas for renewable energies from International-Renewable Energies Agency (IRENA) (;
  • Contribution of Copernicus Climate Change Service to exploration of Climate Change impacts to Energy sector through the European Climatic Energy Mixes project (ECEM);
  • Exploration of collaboration between IEA and IRENA on Environmental impact assessment through the IEA PVPS task 12 through the development of impact assessment of PV systems service;
  • Looking for interaction with the Terawatt Initiative;
  • Organisation of the Fifth Solar training in Sophia Antipolis, France, beginning of 2017;
  • Explore collaboration with GFCS for Energy;
  • EU H2020 ERA NET Plus project "New European Wind Atlas" (NEWA)

User engagement

GEO-VENER plans to build up the pathway to link RE, services, data and metadata to GEOSS, to serve a large variety of users (from citizens to decision makers, including the private sector), to use EO data to enhance our knowledge and information about RE in order to increase substantially the share of RE in the global energy mix by 2030 as proposed within the SDG7 Target.

Future plans

  • Increase the user community of GEO-VENER;
  • Identify the policy mandate that can be given to GEO-VENER;
  • Establish the GEO Renewable Energies Flagship.


  • Support of the EU H2020 programme through the ConnectinGEO and the ERA Planet, ERA NET Plus NEWA and NextGEOSS projects;
  • In-kind contribution of France (MINES ParisTech) to the Spatial Data Infrastructure;  
  • Support of Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service to Solar radiation service;
  • Support of Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) to ECEM project.



Members: Denmark, France, Germany, USA.

Linkages across the Work Programme

Initiatives: C3S; Earth Observations in Service of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Community Activities: Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S); Earth Observations for Managing Mineral Resources.

Leadership & Contributors (this list is being populated)




Implementing Entity



Thierry Ranchin