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European Satellite Day 2013 Spotlights Key Benefits Of Satellite Services For European Citizens

BRUSSELS, September 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

From climate change to space exploration, disaster relief to TV and broadband for the most remote and disadvantaged communities, Europe's satellite technologies are key to delivering essential services and economic growth, concluded experts and scientists meeting in Brussels on European Satellite Day to discuss " Global Risks - Satellite Answers, Foresight in European space capabilities for enhanced global security ". European satellite operators, joined by representatives from the World Economic Forum, the European Space Agency and NGOs called for satellite applications to be put at the heart of the European agenda across sectors, from R&D to end user applications to foster growth and meet the global challenges facing mankind today and in the future.  

" The only way to preserve an environment where essential satellite services can continue to contribute to the  European Union and global policy agenda is by making sure policymakers are aware of what satellite services do today. Satellites can help the EU realise its vision of a Connected Continent, ensuring digital skills,  and  providing high-quality next generation services at affordable prices to citizens  quickly and efficiently, all while  fostering a sustainable and competitive space industrial base  and ensuring a secure and resilient Europe " , said Michel de Rosen , Chairman, of ESOA, the European Satellite Operators Association . Europe is already the centre of excellence for space and the sector contributes to high-tech jobs. The world's leading operators, manufacturers, and the most successful launcher are all European. However, satellite operators the world over need certainty in their ability to access satellite spectrum in years to come. " Once the role of satellite is well understood, our spectrum will be safer as well, " added de Rosen.

" Whereas policymakers are familiar with cellular because everyone has a mobile phone ,  it is less obvious  where satellites, an invisible infrastructure,  fit  in , " noted Aarti Holla , ESOA Secretary General. " So  satellite  has  to  work harder to justify  its s pectrum  use  in the EU a nd  int ernational fora at a time when spectrum is in high demand for mobile broadband needs . If  satellite  spectrum  is compromised  then governments and citizens  will l ose access to critical services  they today  take for granted, " she said.

Speaking for the World Economic Forum, Bruce Weinelt , Director, Head of Telecoms added: " This event is an important step forward in fostering dialogue between spa ce and non-space communities. It will raise  awareness  of space solutions and encourage  their use so as to ensure their ongoing contribution to the challenges of a constantly changing world " .

Roberto Viola , Deputy Director General at DG Connect of the European Commission, speaking ahead of the session on 'Ensuring Education for All through Satellite Services' confirmed: " Satellite broadband is an  ideal  solution for connecting citizens and businesses no matter where they are located and this is true all over the world. We at the Commission are committed to working with Europe ' s satellite operators to make sure a maximum of EU citizens can be brought online as fast as possible via satellite in support of the Digital Agenda targets and a Single Market - there can be no  Connected Continent  without 100% coverage but thanks to  satellite,  full  coverage is possible within every Member State. "

Tony Long , Director, World Wide Fund for Nature: "Today ' s conference is exploring some of the most complex and challenging threats of our time - global security, climate change, food security and growing income disparities.  Satellites  technologies are already playing play a key role in helping alleviate them. Their role looks set to become even more important in choosing between a future of making our planet and lifestyles more sustainable or facing an alternative vision where building resilience to these threats becomes the new watchword. "

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