ADRC participated in the 17th Session of the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) that was held from 23 to 26 November in Melbourne, Australia. The theme of the Forum was "The role of space technology and industry in addressing climate change." The APRSAF was established in 1993 to enhance space activities in the Asia-Pacific region. Attended by space agencies, governments, and international organizations such as the United Nations as well as companies, universities and research institutes, this Forum is the largest space-related conference in the Asia-Pacific region.
The participants of APRSAF share information about their activities and the future plans for their countries and regions. APRSAF also supports international projects designed to find solutions to common issues such as disaster management and environmental protection. The Sentinel Asia initiative is one such activity, and involves the use of space-based information in the form of satellite images for disaster management in the Asia-Pacific region. ADRC has been tasked with the responsibility of receiving emergency observation requests from ADRC member countries and Joint Project Team (JPT) members and, if appropriate, forwarding them on to four regional space agencies, namely, ISRO, GISTDA, KARI and JAXA.
ADRC gave a presentation on this year's requests for the use of space technologies in disaster management through Sentinel Asia. ADRC also emphasized the importance of human resource development to promote the more effective utilization of space technologies in disaster management, giving examples of successful as well as unsuccessful uses of the images provided. ADRC representatives also presented information about a human resource development program for promoting the use of satellite images in disaster management, which is currently being implemented using the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund.