The National Institute Of Environmental Research Of The Republic Of Korea And The National Environment Agency Of Singapore Sign Memorandum Of Understanding

The MOU will enable both countries to share satellite air quality data and collaborate on R&D to address environmental and pollution issues

Singapore, 31 July 2023 – The Republic of Korea’s National Institute of Environmental Research (NIER) and Singapore’s National Environment Agency (NEA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today to share satellite observations of air quality and collaborate on research on its applications for addressing environmental and pollution issues such as climate change and transboundary air pollution. The MOU was signed in Singapore by President of NIER, Mr Kim Dongjin and the Chief Executive Officer of NEA, Mr Wong Kang Jet.

2               Air quality monitoring is crucial for understanding the causes and effects of air pollution, a major concern in Asia due to rapid population growth and urbanisation. Launched in 2020, NIER’s Geostationary Environment Monitoring Spectrometer (GEMS) onboard its GEO-KOMPSAT-2B satellite is the world’s first geostationary satellite instrument that focuses on air quality observations of atmospheric aerosols and gaseous pollutants, such as nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and sulphur dioxide. GEMS produces near-real time hourly daytime measurements of air quality over Asia, enabling scientists to study changes in atmospheric composition and better understand how air pollutants are transported. For more information on GEMS, please visit the NIER website here.

3               Under the MOU, NIER will share data from GEMS with NEA, while NEA will contribute to the validation and analysis of GEMS data through NIER’s Pan-Asia Partnership for Geospatial Air Pollution information (PAPGAPi) programme, facilitating the continued improvement of air quality observations over Asia. NIER and NEA will also undertake joint research on the potential applications of GEMS data, and explore the development of new space- and ground-based products for environmental monitoring, such as improved monitoring of regional smoke haze.

4               Mr Kim Dong Jin, President of NIER, said “We will do our best to support the wide utilisation of GEMS data for atmospheric monitoring and research activities in Asia.”

5               Mr Wong Kang Jet, CEO of NEA, said, “Climate change is a global challenge that can only be tackled through partnerships between countries and institutions. This collaboration is a good example of how we can work together across borders to build a better future. By accessing satellite-based air quality data through the GEMS initiative by the Republic of Korea, we will be able to develop new capabilities and products that can benefit Singapore and Southeast Asia. We look forward to working closely with NIER and partners from the Republic of Korea to further advance cooperation on environmental science and technology.”