"As we debate the goals of the Local Green Deal, the determination to make Europe greener, more sustainable and the first climate neutral continent by 2050, I would like to emphasize the importance of the European Copernicus Earth Observation System as an indispensable source of information", stated Marshal Ortyl, President of the ECR Group in the European Committee of the Regions.
Serving also as Vice-President of the NEREUS platform, Mr Ortyl offered insight into how Copernicus can contribute to better public policies from sustainable agriculture producing healthier food, to greener transport, energy and buildings, improved air and soil quality, smarter cities and urban planning.
"The program helps us gain more detailed knowledge about our territories. It gives us an in-depth understanding of the environmental and socio-economic condition of our territories and a clearer appreciation of the far-reaching effects of the Green Deal Policy. Thanks to satellite images, we are able to monitor different environments and thus make more informed decisions to better protect nature", observed the ECR President.
The Marshal referred to his region of Podkarpackie, where they work inter-regionally with 22 other European regions on the NEREUS platform to learn more about the use of satellite data and space services. Together with the European Commission and the European Space Agency, they have created a collection of best practices and live user stories about how regions are already successfully using the system and benefiting from its knowledge.
In the Marshal's view, we must increasingly take these possibilities into account in our reflection on policy-making around the Green Deal. He argued that "satellite images are not only for experts, but are a tool for regions and their citizens".
The local government official took part in discussions with the EU environment Commissioner, Virginijus Sinkevičius, during the October CoR plenary session, which took place in hybrid format.