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On the public release of carbon dioxide flux estimates based on the observational data by the Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite "IBUKI" (GOSAT)

December 5, 2012

The Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite "IBUKI" (GOSAT), developed jointly by the Ministry of the Environment Japan, the National Institute for Environmental Studies, and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (hereinafter the Three Parties), is the world's first satellite designed specifically for monitoring atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) from space. The satellite has been in operation since its launch on January 23, 2009.
The Three Parties will now publicly distribute the data of global CO2 fluxes on a monthly and regional basis for the one-year period between June 2009 and May 2010. These flux values were estimated from ground-based CO2 monitoring data and improved GOSAT-based CO2 concentration data.
It has been confirmed that uncertainties in CO2 flux estimates can be reduced by the addition of GOSAT data to the ground-based observations. This is the first concrete demonstration of the utility of satellite-based concentration data in the estimation of global CO2 fluxes.
It is expected that this progress in the field of global carbon cycle research will lead to more reliable climate change prediction and to the development of effective environmental policies for mitigating global warming in the future.
In order to obtain better CO2 flux estimates, the Three Parties will continue the effort of refining the data processing algorithms for the retrieval of CO2 concentrations from GOSAT data and the estimation of CO2 fluxes.

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