ABCC Program

Earth Observation for Global Change - Australia, Brazil, Canada, China


Global Change is rapidly becoming one of the most important environmental challenges facing mankind and is a major priority for Governments and international research organizations around the world. Airborne and space-based Earth observation has made it possible to monitor, analyze and document the changes happening across the planet. In the context of broadly- and relatively quickly-changing regional and local situations, it was determined that an international network of Earth Observation organizations was needed to study, monitor, record, and assess the impacts of Global Change.

The new initiative involves national research organizations in Australia, Brazil, Canada and China, and has been named the ABCC Program. Together, the four countries involved represent large-scale ecological and geographical zones that are representative, but not unique, and the results from them can thus be utilized by many others around the world. Geographically, the research areas will cover large parts of Asia, Oceania, South America and North America - some 25% of the total continental landmass of the world. At present, the research programs primarily focus on applications of space technologies to address changes in particular ecological zones, as a result of Global Change, by strengthening cooperation between scientists, technicians, institutions and countries.


  • to maximize use and development of space-based and other EO applications to document and assess the effects of Global Change and its actual or potential impacts.
  • to improve overall capacity and methodologies for monitoring the impacts of Global Change and provide accurate baseline information to decisions-makers.
  • to provide near-shore, oceanic, land-cover, forests, river/lake mapping, and derived environmental assessments and indicators to document the impact of Global Change at a regional scale.
  • to expand the basic knowledge base and stimulate exchanges of scientific and/or technical information on these and other associated collaborative projects.

Research Fields

  • Carbon Cycle
  • Water and Ecosystems
  • Land Use and Land Cover
  • Disaster and Resource Management
  • Environment Monitoring

ABCC Program Partners

  • A: Australia:
    • CRC-SI: Australia and New Zealand Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information
    • CSIRO: Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation
  • B: Brazil:
    • INPE: National Institute for Space Research
  • C: Canada:
    • CCRS: Canada Center for Remote Sensing
  • C: China:
    • CEODE: Center for Earth Observation and Digital Earth