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Lithuania's Baltic Sea coast to be monitored from space


Lithuania's Baltic Sea coast to be monitored from space

The Geological Survey of Lithuania under the Ministry of Environment has signed a European Space Agency project SubCoast implementation agreement. This international project is financed by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme in the area of space. Twelve geological and scientific agencies of six EU countries are taking part in it. The purpose of this project is to use satellite studies in monitoring and forecasting risks posed by subsidence in European lowland coasts.

The land surface is changing due to earthquakes, landslides, coastal erosion, floods, collapse of karst caverns and other reasons. Data on changes in the land surface obtained from space observations as well as geological and geomorphological data on a site explored can help identify subsidence phenomena. Changes in the land surface in Lithuania are mostly determined by landslides and karst subsidence, which often causes collapse of buildings. According to Jonas Satkūnas, deputy director of the Geological Survey of Lithuania, in the course of implementation of the abovementioned project SubCoast, it is planned to accurately assess the stability of Klaipėda quays and other objects as well as subsidence rates.

This is the second European Space Agency project which the Geological Survey of Lithuania is taking part in. In 2006–2009, it implemented a project designed to assess geodynamic movements of the land surface in Europe using the satellite interferometry method. These data may be very useful in assessing the geodynamic stability of both a territory explored and specific engineering objects.

Ministry of Environment information, tel. 266 3660

02 March 2010

Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas
Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas