The Norwegian government had proposed to leave the Copernicus program in their 2015 Budget announced in October. But during the Budget debate in Parliament by all political parties in Norway this week, the decision was overturned.
The Copernicus program is Europe’s global Earth satellite system. It operates one of the most advanced technologies for Earth observation in the world.
Both Tekna (Teknisk-naturvitenskapelig forening), the union of scientists in Norway, and Abelia, a non-profit enterprise for the technology sector in Norway, were both satisfied with the decision.
Lise L Randeberg of Tekna said to NTB: “Copernicus is the largest European climate, environment and surveillance initiative. Together with Galileo, this makes up the basic pillars of the European space politics. We are therefore happy that the Parliament has turned the government's decision around this time.”
Abelia's director Håkon Haugli commented: “Norwegian participation [in the program] gives valuable climate, security and timely data for surveillance of Norwegian sea and land areas.”
Norway has been a member of the Copernicus program since it was started in the year 2000.