The European Environment Agency (EEA) and Esri have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU). The agreement supports the design and development of ways to share and access essential geographic environmental data provided by the agency’s 38 European member countries.
EEA, which already uses Esri’s geographic information system (GIS) products, will now work closely with Esri to improve the agency’s cloud environment map services. European countries will share their environmental data more easily, while nations, agencies, scientists, and policy makers will be able to quickly access and consume the data for viewing and analysis.
“Our partnership with Esri provides us with innovative solutions to reach out to our key stakeholders and present them with timely and relevant information as they need it,” said Jacquie McGlade, EEA’s executive director. “The agency will now also be able to work directly with citizens in the co-production of knowledge via open access to data, creation of personalized maps, and simple ways of sharing data among social networks. The two-way exchange of knowledge and expertise between Esri and the EEA underlines just how business and the public sector can work well together to build answers for tomorrow’s challenges.”
During the next year, EEA and Esri will work together to develop:
- Cloud architecture that serves the EEA initiatives and European Union directives
- Data sharing that is in line with the principles of Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe (INSPIRE) as well as the Shared Environmental Information System
- Standardized templates and layer definitions based on the Esri Community Maps initiative
- A collaborative plan supporting EEA’s Eye on Earth initiative
“EEA is a leader in environmental issues and has a high level of expertise,” said Esri president Jack Dangermond. “This alliance brings together EEA’s environmental knowledge and Esri’s technologies, which will greatly benefit Europe’s environmental community. People will share information via the cloud and use applications that will allow them to analyze and create policy regarding quality of the environment and hazards.”
EEA helps the community and member countries make informed decisions about improving the environment, integrating environmental consideration into economic policies, and moving toward sustainability. It is also charged to coordinate the European Environment Information and Observation Network (Eionet). Esri’s complete ArcGIS system plays a prominent role in helping EEA achieve its goal of delivering geographic data management, visualization, and analysis capabilities to environmental information consumers.