Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere for Environmental Security

Recent ecological disasters make human beings aware of changes in the Earth’s climate. At the present time anthropogenic activities lead to the emission of greenhouse gases, pollutants, aerosols and ozone depleting substances and the scientific community in general feels responsible for understanding how changes in atmospheric chemistry can affect the Earth’s climate. A NATO Advanced Research Workshop (ARW) was organized at Rabat (Morocco) on the 17-19th of November 2005 on the 'Remote sensing of the Atmosphere for Environmental Security'. The first part of the proceedings describes the current capabilities of various satellite experiments which are performing measurements of the Earth’s atmosphere, as for example some of the results obtained recently by three experiments onboard the ENVISAT Environment Satellite (ENVISAT), namely, the Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment (GOME), the SCanning Imaging Absorption for Atmospheric CHartographY (SCIAMACHY) and the Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding (MIPAS). For the analysis of spectra recorded by these instruments it is necessary to make good use of efficient radiative transfer codes. These computer codes need as input, a dataset of high quality spectroscopic parameters which can be generated only through a careful analysis of high quality laboratory measurements. In addition some of the future satellite missions which are under preparation at the European Space Agency (ESA) are briefly described. The characterisation of pollution in urban areas and the growing lack of water in many countries of the Mediterranean area are of universal concern. The extreme variability of the properties of aerosols in arid and semi arid areas is presented in the context of an experiment performed at Cairo (in Egypt). Finally, the understanding of climate chemistry couplings requires that ground-based and satellite information be confronted with the results of chemical transport and atmospheric models collected and...
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