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The Global Terrestrial Observing System fulfils its mission through a number of complementary activities. It facilitates communication and cooperation between existing initiatives and promotes the harmonization of measurement methods and data processing.

The four main GTOS panels are the: Coastal GTOS (C-GTOS), the Terrestrial Observation Panel on Climate (TOPC), the Terrestrial Carbon Observation panel (TCO) and the Global Observation of Forest and Land Cover Dynamics panel (GOFC-GOLD). These expert groups are aimed at promoting regional and global datasets and facilitating the synthesis of globally consistent data. The panels have also contributed to the identification of key variables for the Terrestrial Ecosystem Monitoring Sites (TEMS) database and towards the establishment of regional networks.

The Net Primary Productivity (NPP) demonstration project uses ground measurements for validating the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) remote sensing products that are related to ecosystem structure and carbon and water balance. The project shows the benefits of cooperation between different science communities.

The Global Terrestrial Observing Network (GT-Net) link existing terrestrial research networks together that have similar efforts for a particular theme, habitat type or region. GT-Net serves as a framework for network managers to explore areas of common interest, harmonize research efforts, share data, information and experience and allow complete and coherent data sets to be generated.

In addition GTOS undertakes and collaborates in a number of international activities, including:
1. the coordination of the development of the land theme (IGOL) of the Integrated Global Observing Strategy (IGOS);
2. the participation in the development of the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) including leading and contribution to the implementation of the identified tasks;
3. the development of an international biodiversity initiative (B-GTOS), and
4. the technical support achieving the objectives of numerous international Conventions and treaties.

GT-Net | GEOSS | IGOL | GOFC-GOLD | TOPC | TCO | C-GTOS | B-GTOS | Conv | TEMS | To the top of the page.

© FAO 2002 GTOS   ::   Global Terrestrial Observing System   ::   15 January 2007