Cuca, B., Antoninetti, M., De Zorzi, S., Geist, T., Gil, A., Fontan, E., Manunta, P., Pergola, N., Zolotikova, S. & Tramutoli, V. (2016) How can space make a difference for the agriculture sector. Working Group on Earth Observation/Copernicus. NEREUS - Network of European Regions Using Space Technologies. Brussels, Belgium. 52 pp. DOI:10.13140/RG.2.2.36241.02404.
The Land component of Copernicus program is requested to address the needs of several EU Policy areas relevant to the Regional dimension such as: Climate change, Land degradation and desertification, Forest resources, Biodiversity, Water resources, Agriculture, Rural development and Food security. Referring to the three latter ones, the largest community of the sector is represented by EIP-AGRI. The European Innovation Partnerships (EIPs) are a relatively new approach to EU research and innovation. They are challenge-driven, focusing on societal benefits and a rapid modernization of the associated sectors and markets. EIPs are launched in areas in which government intervention is clearly justified and where combining EU, national and regional efforts in research and development and demand-side measures will attempt to achieve the goals in a quicker and more efficient manner. There are five established EIPs, focused on the following areas: Active & Healthy Ageing; Agricultural Sustainability and Productivity; Smart Cities and Communities; Water; Raw materials. The aim of this document was to provide an informative study that illustrates concrete examples and effective solutions based on space technologies that are already in place across European Regions in the domain of Agriculture and Rural Development. Agriculture sector seems to be particularly suitable for the development of the new markets where larger industries but also small and micro enterprises using Remote Sensing technologies could address local and individual needs of farmers and cultivators with new, innovative and efficient user- targeted services. For these purposes, the information coming from the new generation of Sentinel satellites, in particular Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2, and their integration into existing systems could have an important role and could stimulate the creation of new and innovative applications, services and products for a better organisation of agricultural production, rural development and territorial management in general.