Bill Nelson, NASA Administrator, explores progress of geospatial program for the Amazon on the campus of the Alliance of Bioversity and CIAT

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Palmira, Colombia.  Bill Nelson, NASA Administrator and U.S. Senator, visited on August 2 the campus of the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT in Palmira, Colombia. Accompanied by a delegation from the space agency, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the U.S. Ambassador to Colombia, Nelson had the opportunity to learn first-hand about the progress of the SERVIR-Amazonia Program, an initiative to promote sustainable management of natural resources in the Amazon Basin.

During the visit, Nelson and the delegation were welcome by scientists and researchers leading different initiatives within the SERVIR-Amazonia Program. For two hours, the geospatial services and tools developed within the framework of the Program were presented, as well as various impact projects of the Alliance of Bioversity and CIAT.

“We can use the information that earth observation tools provide to make people’s lives better. I am pleased and grateful for the work you are doing,” said Bill Nelson during his speech at our premises, where he was hosted by Joe Tohme, Managing Director for the Americas of the Alliance of Bioversity and CIAT, and Carlos Gasco, Director of the SERVIR-Amazonia Program.

SERVIR-Amazonia is part of SERVIR Global, a joint development initiative between NASA and USAID. Since 2005, SERVIR has been working in partnership with several countries to promote the use of Earth observation satellite information and geospatial technologies to address environmental and natural resource management challenges.

SERVIR-Amazonia aims to understand the needs of the region and develop tools and services that inform decision-making and promote the inclusion of the voice of women and indigenous peoples in the management of natural resources in the countries that make up the Amazon Basin, including Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Suriname, and Guyana.

Carlos Gasco, Director of SERVIR-Amazonia, underscored that this high-level visit is a significant endorsement to the joint work carried out in collaboration with governments, universities, non-governmental organizations, community-based groups and scientists from the Alliance and the United States.

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