Lancaster EPrints

The environmental virtual observatory:a new vision for catchment science

Gurney, R. and Emmett, B. and McDonald, Adrian and Blair, Gordon and Buytaert, Wouter and Freer, Jim and Haygarth, Philip and Rees, G. and Teztlaff, D. (2011) The environmental virtual observatory:a new vision for catchment science. In: AGU Fall Meeting 2011, 2011-12-05, San Francisco.

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Abstract

Environmental scientists need to make predictions that are increasingly cross-disciplinary, bringing together observations and models in both physical and biological systems, and visualising the results. Observations can be from multiple platforms, and there are often many competing models that could be used. At the same time, catchment managers and policy makers face a challenging future trying to ensure a wide range of ecosystem and hydrological services are delivered from increasingly constrained budgets whilst complying with a range of regulation requirements. There is also a greater requirement for transparency and access to data and making regulatory decision making processes visible to the public. The Environmental Virtual Observatory Pilot project (EVOp) is a new initiative from the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) designed to explore new tools and approaches to support these challenges. The long term vision of the Environmental Virtual Observatory is to: - Make environmental data more visible and accessible to a wide range of scientists and potential users including for public good applications; - Provide tools to facilitate the integrated analysis of data to give greater access to added knowledge and expert analysis and to visualisation of the results; - Develop new, added-value knowledge from public and private sector data assets to help tackle environmental challenges. The EVO will exploit cloud computing to give a shared working space for data, models and analysis tools; in this two year pilot project we will develop five local and national exemplars to demonstrate and test the opportunities and constraints from such an approach. The question-based exemplars being developed are focused on (i) management options for flooding and diffuse pollution at local and national scales, (ii) approaches for transferring hydrological models for both flooding and drought from data rich to data poor areas and (iii) defining the uncertainty bounds of current climate change predictions on change in soil carbon at a global scale. By developing exemplars focussed on some major environmental questions at a local, national and global scale we are able to directly test issues such as data assimilation, adapting and linking models to work in a cloud environment, and portal design for a wide range of end-users. New international standards for model exchange and exchange of analysis tools are desirable to supplement the emerging data exchange standards, and the EVOp will make a contribution here. A working prototype portal will be delivered in December 2012 that examines these issues, for a possible next phase.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Journal or Publication Title: AGU Fall Meeting 2011
Subjects: UNSPECIFIED
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > School of Computing & Communications
Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 57638
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 18 Aug 2012 14:26
Refereed?: No
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2014 11:35
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/57638

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