West Nile Virus (WNV) is commonly spread to humans by the bites of Culex sp. mosquitoes. As South Dakota is the U.S. hotspot for WNV, local scientists and public health officials developed a way to use environmental data from NASA satellites to forecast disease risk. These data help inform scientists and community practitioners working in disease prevention and control to educate the public and better manage vector control efforts.
Large accumulations of cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) are toxic and harmful to people and animals. NASA Aqua and Terra satellite data help detect, forecast, and target responses to Harmful Algal Blooms in the Great Lakes and Florida. This information can aid in risk assessment and decision making to safeguard public health for all citizens.
River blindness (onchocerciasis) is an affliction caused by a parasitic worm that is transmitted person-to-person by the bites of Simulium sp. black flies. The Carter Center targeted its river blindness eradication efforts in the Americas by using Landsat and Terra satellite data to find previously unknown populations at risk. This information can aid public health officials to identify specific health needs and expand the delivery of health services to isolated communities.
Download our new poster to celebrate Earth Day 2018 on April 22. In Carl Sagan's words, "The Earth's surface is the shore of the cosmic ocean."
Ozone (O3) in the air we breathe can have detrimental effects on human health and the environment. The U.S. EPA utilized NASA Aura satellite data of North American background ozone levels to guide its updated National Ambient Air Quality Standards. These new standards will enhance public health for all citizens, including high-risk populations such as children and the elderly.
Malaria is a life-threatening parasitic disease transmitted to humans by the bites of Anopheles sp. mosquitoes. In the Peruvian Amazon, scientists are turning to satellite data from Landsat, the Global Precipitation Measurement mission, Terra, and Aqua to develop a system that can forecast malaria outbreaks at the household level. These data can provide additional tools for scientists and public health officials to mitigate disease risk and target resource distribution to at-risk communities.