“Ground Truth”

As the U.S. and other national space agencies have initiated a range of contemporaneous Earth Science programs to monitor the State of the Earth, a new field of security study is developing integrally connected to national defenses and sustainable security.

NASA has labeled a number of its programs as focusing on Earth’s “vital signs” and has begun addressing critical global/local security realities, even as the U.S. Congress looks to cut support for the programs and rejects the results of the science.

As we consider security within this environment, StratDem brings our readers an emphasis on environmental security as essential to national security. The strategic demands of science and politics join over-the-horizon views of security and on-the-ground measurement and assessment of earth science facts.

The present era is beginning to employ vision and technology toward first-generation baseline studies of earth systems. These data bases, over time, will enable effective, applied science toward sustainable best practices.

Today, climate science draws a planet-wide scope of ‘existential’ security interest.

You can manage only what you can measureNASA

This week we feature the concept of “ground truth” as the Orbiting Carbon Observatory begins its carbon measuring and monitoring mission. With its “First Light“, the historic earth-atmosphere-monitoring OCO-2 satellite now in orbit in front of the “A Train“, begins reporting live from space back to its mission team in Pasadena, California. The JPL OCO team at mission control is now operational, viewing and recording earth’s ‘thin layer of atmosphere‘ as never before.

OCO-2 is a game-changing mission, tracking the changing composition of the atmosphere and delivering comprehensive, multi-spectra data that can be assessed, analyzed and reported to policy-makers and distributed to ‘netizens’ as #planetcitizens. The science of earth monitoring offers a new perspective, a next generation of  reality checks needed for policy and decisions at every level of government, business, and community

Ground truth” is scientifically defined by NASA as part of a calibrating process of satellite imagery. A new generation of earth monitoring satellites is changing the way we see #PlanetEarth


OCO-2@work_Above LA-Pasadena-JPL_Nov2014
OCO-2@work_Above LA-Pasadena-JPL_Nov2014

Among first-generation earth-observing satellites, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory goes about its history-making work

OCO-2 @GreenPolicy360 flying over program managers at JPL/NASA, Pasadena, CA


Credibility follows accurate scientific measurement and reporting…

Over an extended period of time, Strategic Demands will continue examining concepts of “ground truth” and first-generation ‘vital sign’ measurements. In association with GreenPolicy360, we will be assessing security risks from a comprehensive point of view.

The availability of “Big Data” with ‘open’ NASA research and the ‘democratization of space’ are rapidly changing the fields of security engagement. In an age of 24/7 high speed delivery of information over the Net, this new NewSpace data can be open-source shared and made available ‘democratically via connections enabled by the worldwide web.

“Ground truth” is an approach that StratDem will pursue concurrent to our environmental-national security work. We will strive both for an overview of ‘big picture’ forces at work and on-the-ground related stories of strategic importance.

The “vital signs” NASA is popularizing in its earth science missions will offer key data over time and baselines for evaluating Earth’s planetary systems. Today’s generation of satellite launches form the beginning of data-over-time study, historic and necessary.

Our generation is the generation that threatens the health and sustainability of the planet’s bio-systems even as it reluctantly reacts, initiating scientific and popular efforts to change direction. The threat environment ranges across a full-spectrum — from nuclear proliferation and industrial ‘externalities’, atmospheric inputs described as producing an unprecedented chemical experiment with resulting climate change, to extinction of species and worldwide terrestrial system biosphere loss resulting from economic expansion and ‘progress.’ The response to this gathering array of threats must also range across a full-spectrum of strategies and solutions.

Ground Truth at GreenPolicy 360

Environmental Security at Strategic Demands

New Definitions of National Security