Copernicus data and service use cases from around the globe

Copernicus data is increasingly being used in a lot of different cases. Aside from the products and datasets being developed by the different Copernicus services, Copernicus data has many unlikely applications. Institute for Environmental Solutions as a representative of the Copernicus Relays network invites to explore the possibilities of Copernicus services and data.

Copernicus Maritime Surveillance – CMS

The Maritime Surveillance component of the Copernicus Security Service provides services and Earth Observation products in the following areas: Fisheries Control, Law Enforcement, Customs, Marine Environment, and Maritime Safety and Security.


In May 2017, a joint operation between the Spanish, Portuguese, US and UK authorities was tracking the activities of a South American organisation based in Spain known for smuggling cocaine. CMS was activated to support the search for a vessel that was suspected of carrying the illicit product. As a result, the Spanish authorities apprehended a fishing vessel, and a search uncovered around 2.4 tonnes of cocaine.

More about this case here.

Copernicus Climate Change Service – C3S

C3S responds to environmental and societal challenges associated with human-induced climate changes. The service provides the access to information for monitoring and predicting climate change, thus helping to support adaptation and mitigation.


The Heineken brewery in Zoeterwoude, the Netherlands, in collaboration with the University of Wageningen, analysed the impacts that climate change could have on beer production. Climate change can affect water resources and their availability, as well as crops. C3S indicators that track flooding, drought and extreme temperatures can be extremely valuable to understand the impacts that climate change will have on breweries. Combining satellite observations with meteorological data will allow to better anticipate droughts and floods, thus enabling better resource management and a responsible approach to business and environmental development.

Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service – CAMS

CAMS produces forecasts on air quality, solar energy and the role that atmospheric gases and particles play in climate change. Information on the evolution of the ozone hole, gases being released from wildfires and levels of dangerous particulate matter affecting air quality are some of the better known uses of CAMS.


Australia use CAMS data to help prevent skin cancer. The SunSmart app gives 7-day weather forecasts, including daily information about UV levels, temperatures and sun protection times. Cancer Council Victoria and the Bureau of Meteorology sources the UV information from CAMS, which it uses to generate a UV index and sun protection times.

Copernicus Land Monitoring Service – CLMS

CLMS provides geographical information on land cover and on variables related, for instance, to the state of vegetation or the water cycle. It supports applications in a variety of domains such as spatial planning, forest management, water management, agriculture, and food security, etc.


In Ethiopia new project was launched – GIACIS project (Geo-data for Innovative Agricultural Credit Insurance Schemes). This project uses Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) to develop an agricultural micro-insurance product that helps to detect whether there is a risk of drought or other weather conditions that could impact crop development.

Farmers in Ethiopia generally have less than 0.5ha of land which make them particularly vulnerable to drought. By using earth-observation data, this project aims to reduce investment risks for smallholder farmers.

More about the project here.

Copernicus Emergency Management Service – CEMS

CEMS provides all actors involved in the management of natural disasters, man-made emergency situations, and humanitarian crises with timely and accurate geo-spatial information derived from satellite remote sensing and completed by available in situ or open data sources.


In 2016 when strong earthquakes struck Central Italy leading to many deaths and widespread destruction. At the time, the Italian Civil Protection authorities activated EMS, which produced 120 maps of the damaged areas, supporting their decision-making, rescue and aid delivery activities during these disastrous events.

Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service – CMEMS

CMEMS provides regular and systematic reference information on the physical state variability and dynamics of the ocean and marine ecosystems for the global ocean and the European regional seas.


CMEMS data is used in the MIO CIMAR app. The app provides warnings on the sea conditions of the Pacific and Caribbean coasts of Costa Rica. Information on wind, wave (height, period and direction), sea surface temperature, and ocean currents forecasts are provided. Notifications are sent to users with warning messages. The app is aimed towards users that need information on the state of the sea to be able to carry out their activities in a safe way, such as fishermen, tourists, surfers, residents, the coastguard and many others.

Copernicus is the World’s largest and most ambitious Earth observation programme. It provides accurate, timely and easily accessible information to improve the management of the environment, understand and mitigate the effects of climate change and ensure civil security. Since 2017, the Institute for Environmental Solutions (IES) is a member and Latvia’s representative of Copernicus Relay and Academy networks. IES explains possibilities offered by the Copernicus program for national, business and public needs, organise training and information activities. Since 2015 IES in cooperation with European Space Agency is using Copernicus satellite data for assessment of different environmental and natural resources.

Find more about IES work in Copernicus network here.

Find more about IES cooperation with European Space Agency here.