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Environmental Informatics - Methods, Tools and Applications in Environmental Information Processing

Environmental Informatics - Methods, Tools and Applications in Environmental Information Processing
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Author(s): Bernd Page (University of Hamburg, Germany) and Claus Rautenstrauch (Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany)
Copyright: 2001
Pages: 10
Source title: Environmental Information Systems in Industry and Public Administration
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Claus Rautenstrauch (Otto von Guericke University, Denmark) and Susanne Patig (Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-930708-02-0.ch001

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Abstract

The protection of our environment remains one of the greatest challenges in industrialized societies. This challenge is addressing politics, economy as well as technology and research. It is clear that the various problems in environmental protection, environmental planning, research and engineering can be only solved on the ground of a comprehensive and reliable information basis. State and dynamics of the environment are described by biological, physical, chemical, geological, meteorological, and social-economic data. This data is time and space dependent and addresses past or current states. The processing of this data and the production of information on the environment, on its stress factors, and on mutual influence mechanisms are fundamental for any kind of environmental planning and preventive measures. Therefore, environmental problem solving is mainly an information processing activity handling a wide range of environmental data. Solutions to our environmental problems are strongly dependent on the quality of accessible information sources. Certainly, information is a very critical factor in making decisive political actions and in changing people’s attitudes on the environment. This information on environmental aspects is just as important as basis for decisions on actions in environmental protection as for gaining knowledge in environmental research.

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