Answering Earth’s Call

When communities face a limited freshwater supply, beachgoers have difficulty breathing due to toxic red tides, or tour operators want to find the most sustainable way to travel to Antarctica — we’re there.

We work with people on the ground around the world to solve problems as they unfold. We help find solutions to challenges before they become catastrophes, and help communities recover when catastrophe is unavoidable.

Data from NASA’s Earth-observing satellites offer partner organizations and research scientists a powerful tool to deepen their discovery and support their success. We make them available through six specialized teams, called "program areas."

Program Areas

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Ensuring Food Security

From individual farmers to global food chains, we help optimize decision-making about food availability and access through Earth-observing data.



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Empowering Communities

Our skill-building initiatives empower people around the world to solve local challenges using Earth observations and remote sensing technologies.

Capacity Building


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Building climate resilience

The planet is getting hotter, wetter and drier. We help decision-makers use Earth observations to plan for these climate-related changes. The result? More resilient communities.



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Boosting Disaster Readiness

Resilience. Response. Recovery. When disaster strikes, our team provides decision-makers, communities and governments with life-saving Earth observations.


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Strengthening Ecosystems

To protect our natural land, marine and freshwater resources, we promote the use of Earth observations in conservation, sustainability and resource management.

Ecological Conservation


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Promoting Health & Air Quality

We use Earth-observing data to inform air quality standards and support solutions for public health initiatives — all to strengthen our communities' well-being.

Health & Air Quality


Water Resources

Enhancing Water Management

Water is one of our most invaluable resources. We help monitor the demand, supply and quality of water around the world and the development of tools to promote conservation.

Water Resources


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Reducing Harm from Wildfires 

Fire is an essential process for many ecosystems, but uncontrolled fire can be disastrous to anything in their path. We leverage Earth-observing data, applied research, and partnerships to reduce risk before, during, and after a fire.

Wildland Fires

Earth Science Missions

NASA’s Earth-observing satellites can be used to inform real-world applications useful across all program efforts. Explore associated mission applications programs within NASA Earth’s Applied Sciences Program and learn how using NASA data in your work can benefit society. 

Projects & Initiatives

Our work isn’t limited to six program areas. We support projects across a broad spectrum of topics, from urban development and energy management to transportation and infrastructure.

Group on Earth Observations

GEO is a global coordinating body that aims to enhance the use of Earth observations in environmental decision-making across sectors — and across borders. We support a GEO portfolio that spans nine focus areas.

Prizes and Challenges

NASA is a public-sector leader with extensive experience administering prizes and challenges. Through initiatives like this one in the Applied Sciences program, NASA leverages public ingenuity to find creative ways to solve tough problems benefiting people around the world.

Risk and Resilience

This initiative focuses on the use of NASA Earth observations to better understand and reduce the risks and impacts to lives and livelihoods. We strive for inclusive, science-informed decision making that can lead to resilient communities.

Socioeconomic Assessments

The Applied Sciences Program’s Socioeconomic Assessments initiative works across disciplines to build a collaborative, capable community assessing the societal and economic benefits of using Earth science information for decision making. Socioeconomic Assessments help us understand how Earth observations can help decisionmakers, emergency responders, and resource managers reduce the loss of life and property due to disasters, understand environmental factors that affect human health, improve resource management, and protect and sustainably manage ecosystems.

Sustainable Development Goals

NASA’s SDG initiative focuses on advancing sustainable development around the world through Earth science applications and research in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are a collection of 17 interlinked goals that seek to reduce inequality and foster sustainability globally. 

energy and sustainable infrastructure 

The Prediction Of Worldwide Energy Resources (POWER) project advances the public and private capability to integrate NASA earth observations and research into renewable energy, sustainable infrastructure, and agroclimatology related decisions. POWER provides freely available value-added solar and meteorological datasets, geospatial web data services, and a variety of analytical tools to user communities. 

Managing solar power arrays for power companies and communities, assessing solar power site suitability, evaluating factory/building energy usage, powering instrumented drones making measurements over oceans, and assessing crop productivity, are all ways people use POWER data. Over the last 5 years more than 600,000 people use POWER to make energy, infrastructure, and agriculture related decisions worldwide. POWER continues NASA’s goal to observe, understand, and model the Earth system by serving out these invaluable datasets to enhance societal decision-making, that addresses sustainability related challenges and thereby, improves quality of life on Earth.