INSPIRE – Why is This Such a Good Idea
Keywords: INSPIRE, public data, governance, environmental management,
AbstractWe all know the images from the great floods in Central Europe. Enormous areas are left under water, the life of people and animals are threatened, and subsequent reconstruction incurs enormous costs. In Denmark, we have alsoexperienced flooding – on a smaller scale, but extensive enough to give us the impression that water runs where water wants to run. Water does not respect borders, neither administrative nor national. The same applies to a number of other environmental phenomena such as air-pollution, spreading of infectious diseases and invasive species. In emergency situations, it is crucial to have access to relevant and reliable information. It must be possible quickly and easily to answer questions such as where the water will run to over the next couple of hours, which settlements are at risk, and where can we evacuate to? Furthermore, when talking of phenomena that strike across borders, it is important to be able to access data from several different countries, and that these can be used as one coherent information basis. It is exactly for this reason that the INSPIRE Directive was approved seven years ago. This article provides an overview of the content and the significance of INSPIRE.
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