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GMES project for humanitarian relief services receives further funding from ESA

13 February, 2007 – Infoterra Ltd, an EADS Astrium company and a leader in the provision of geographic information products and services, has announced that it will receive further funding from the European Space Agency (ESA) for the next phase of the GMES project Respond, which provides the humanitarian relief community with geographic information services and support.

The Respond project, which includes services supporting humanitarian relief, disaster reduction and reconstruction, will receive a further 3 years of funding. This will enable the close working practices with the humanitarian relief organisations which were achieved in the initial phase to be refined and to expand the capacity/capability for producing detailed maps derived from satellite data. New partners have also joined the Respond consortium from the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, Italy and Germany.

Infoterra Ltd will continue as the prime contractor for Respond, providing project management for a range of tasks including data acquisition coordination and map production, and reporting directly to ESA.

Dr Nick Veck, Project Director for Respond and a Director of Infoterra Ltd, said, “We are delighted with this new funding as it will allow us to continue the development of services and products, with the aim of providing an integrated geographic information service to help the humanitarian community.”

“Geographic information is vital to the humanitarian services across the world, to assess damage from disasters including earthquakes, hurricanes and floods as well as to monitor complex crises such as in Darfur. With up-to-date accurate geographical information, vital questions can be answered – Exactly where did the disaster hit? How far is the nearest airport? Where can we establish camps? Timely and appropriate answers to questions such as these reduce suffering and can save lives.”

– About GMES
GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) is a European initiative for the coordination, generation and provision of information services to key decision makers – local, regional and global – to support vital environmental and security issues. The services provided by GMES – mapping, support for emergency management and forecasting – will be vital for security and risk management, as well as enabling better management of land and resources.

– About Respond
Respond (www.respond-int.org) is an alliance of European and International organisations working with the humanitarian community to improve access to maps, satellite imagery and geographic information. Respond is part of the European Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) programme.

– About Infoterra Ltd
Infoterra Ltd. is a leading provider of geographic information products and services. Its portfolio of geographic information solutions includes airborne and satellite data acquisition, geo-information creation, database management and outsourced hosting. Infoterra provides geospatial knowledge to companies worldwide to help them make informed decisions. The company has major customers in communications, utilities, engineering, agriculture, defence and oil, gas & mineral exploration.

Infoterra Ltd. is part of the Infoterra group which comprises companies in France, Germany and the United Kingdom, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Astrium Ltd, an EADS company. For more info visit: www.infoterra.co.uk