How satellites could help hold countries to emissions promises made at COP26 summit

GLASGOW - On a recent day inside the sprawling conference center where United Nations climate talks are taking place, a small crowd gathered to hear a panel with an intriguing title: "The Space Race to Save the Planet."

At its pavilion inside the summit, Japan has a display on the half dozen satellites its space agency maintains to observe land, ocean and atmospheric changes. Foto: AP/Ritzau Scanpix

It wasn't, despite the name, a tale of science fiction. Rather, the event was about satellites and the promising ways that scientists are using them to track greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere.

"If you had told me this a decade ago, you could have knocked me over with a feather," Riley Duren, a University of Arizona research scientist and engineering fellow at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said of the boom in emissions-monitoring satellites...

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