USAID Develops Monitoring and Visualization System for Mesoamerica
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
As part of its on-going assistance to the Central America region, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) teamed up with NASA, CATHALAC, CCAD, the World Bank, and the private sector, to support the development of web-based geographic and environmental information tools.
This Regional System is the first to employ NASA satellite data and computer models to provide decision-makers with the vital information necessary to respond to crisis situations and monitor environmental changes.
The SERVIR website provides user-friendly, interactive tools readily accessible to anyone with an Internet connection. SERVIR can be used by scientists, educators, and policy makers to monitor and forecast ecological changes, and respond to disasters such as forest fires, tropical storms, floods, drought, and volcanic eruptions.
El Salvador has recently been buffeted by several natural disasters, including an earthquake, volcanic eruption, and severe flooding and landslides. The government required rapid information in order to respond to these disasters, and reduce damages to human life and property. They obtained much of this information through SERVIR.
During the heavy rains and flooding caused by Tropical Storm Stan in Guatemala and El Salvador, NASA staff worked closely with the National Territory Study Service (SNET) and the Ministers of Environment to create specific satellite imagery scenes. NASA posted pre-disaster and post-disaster information and images on the SERVIR website, responding within minutes to information requests, helping both countries’ agencies coordinate efforts.