Copernicus is not just a space programme, it is first and foremost a people’s programme. The Sentinel satellites orbit the Earth and observe our planet from space, while its Copernicus Emergency Management Service benefit people by allowing to better respond to disasters and provide humanitarian aid through free of charge satellite-enabled emergency management products.
The Copernicus Emergency Management Service (or Copernicus EMS) is one of the six main services that the Copernicus Programme provides worldwide. It has been in operation since April 2012. The service supports crisis managers, Civil Protection authorities and humanitarian aid actors dealing with natural disasters, man-made emergency situations, and humanitarian crises, as well as those involved in Disaster Risk Reduction and recovery activities.
The Rapid Mapping service of EMS was activated for instance during the series of devastating hurricanes that hit the Caribbean and the United States in 2017 – Harvey, Irma, and Maria. This service was also activated after a 7.3 magnitude earthquake that struck at the borders between Iraq and Iran, after a severe flooding event in Niger, and in the aftermath of many more disaster events.
Find out more about the CEMS and its missions here