23 January 1992

Doc. 6549

1403-22/1/92-1-E

Report

on European space policy

(Rapporteurs: Mr FOURRÉ, France, Socialist,

and Mr LENZER, Germany, CDU)


SUMMARY

      The Ministers of the European Space Agency met last November to re-assess Europe's commitments in space. Facing drastic political changes in the ex-USSR and the downgrading of certain NASA programmes, Europe too could be tempted to reduce considerably its own long term investments in space.

      The Assembly remains however convinced that it is important for Europe to pursue its space policy objectives and in particular the European long-term space plan. It supports the decisions taken by the Ministers while recalling the need to ensure a balance between the resources used and the results obtained.

I. DRAFT RESOLUTION

1.       The Assembly took note of the resolutions adopted by the Ministers of the European Space Agency (Munich, 19-20 November 1991) on "the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 and the programmes" and on the "programmes for observation of the Earth and its environment" and in particular of their decision to meet every year.

2.       These resolutions, which reaffirm Europe's commitment to continue to develop an independent space capability, have nevertheless been conditioned by the new world space environment. This environment, which remained virtually unchanged between the establishment of the long-term plan in 1985 in Rome and its confirmation in 1987 in The Hague, has since undergone major upheavals, mainly because of the political changes in Europe.

3.       Strategic considerations were of considerable importance in motivating the United States and the Soviet Union for the conquest of space. But prestige was the main object in this conquest and it played an important part in Europe as well. However, neither of these two reasons is today as important as it was for the justification of investment in space.

4.       The Assembly feels that the broad guidelines of the European Space policy should be decided on the basis of scientific and industrial motivations. It remains convinced that it is important for

Europe to pursue its space policy objectives, and in particular the European long-term space plan, for the following reasons:

i.       Europe has already acquired competences in the field of space        which would be lost if there were to be any significant slowing        down in the development of its space programme.

      Such loss of competence would be harmful for Europe at a time        when the applications of space technologies play an increasingly        important role in the social and economic development of our

      countries.

ii.       The pursuit of space research makes a positive contribution to        scientific progress, particularly in the fields of solid and        fluid physics, human physiology, etc.

      In addition it gives Europe the possibility of being present in

      the major exploration programmes which can only be achieved        within the framework of co-operation at world level.

iii.       The long term space plan is a cornerstone of the European        technological community envisaged by the Single European Act.

iv.       The space programmes which contribute to give us a better        knowledge of our environment will have the utmost importance for        the future of our society.

v.       Space technology ensures the training of high level engineers and        researchers which Europe will need to cope with the economic        challenges of the twenty-first century.

      The commercial success of the European launching programmes shows        Europe's capacity when she has the will to assert her identity        as well as the economic advantage of her achievements.

5.       The Assembly is convinced that those member states of the Council of Europe which are not members of the European Space Agency will also derive benefit, if indirectly, from the European space capability. In this connection it welcomes the fact that the Ministers have emphasised "the need to ensure synergy between the Agency and the European Communities and between the Agency and other European organisations concerned while taking due account of their respective memberships and areas of responsibility".

6.       It is important to set up close co-operation with the space organisations that will take over from the former Soviet programmes.

7.       The Assembly approves the initiatives towards the setting-up of a European Satellite Control Agency and considers the decision of the Western European Union (WEU) to set up a "Satellite data interpretation and training centre" to be a milestone in that way. It considers that the Convention of the European Space Agency allows it to take punctual action in the field of activities of Earth observation for the purpose of verification and monitoring of the application of disarmament agreements.

8.       The Assembly declares its support for the idea of an independent capability for manned space flights for Europe and for the idea of using programmes of observation of the Earth to obtain a better understanding of environmental problems. It wishes to congratulate the European Space Agency on the launching and operation of Olympus, Giotto, Hipparcos, Météosat, the Space Telescope, Ulysses and ERS-1, and to assure it of its political support.

9.       In addition to the European Space Agency, national space agencies play an important role. These agencies should be encouraged to exchange their information and to co-ordinate their work in order to preserve complementarity and avoid duplication at European level.

10.       It supports in general the decisions taken by the Ministers of the European Space Agency at their meeting in Munich on 19 and 20 November 1991 which are in accordance with its own aims. The annual frequency of ministerial meetings should not however constitute any hindrance to the longer-term commitments required for execution of the space plan.

11.       It instructs its President to communicate the present resolution to the Council and the Executive of the European Space Agency, as evidence of political support, on the widest geographical basis, for the European long-term space plan.

II. DRAFT ORDER

1.       The Assembly refers to its Recommendation ... (1992) on European space policy.

2.       It is aware of the role of parliaments in ensuring a balance between the resources used and the results obtained, and instructs its Committee on Science and Technology to continue to follow the activities of the European Space Agency, and in particular to pay the utmost attention to the 1992 ministerial meeting, and to report back in due course.

III. EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

by Mr Fourré and Mr Lenzer

THE DECISIONS OF THE MINISTERS

1.       The recent meeting of the European Ministers responsible for Space Affairs (Munich, 19-20 November 1991) may be considered to have been a partial success. But a partial success, seen from another viewpoint, can also be a partial failure. The Ministers have certainly not repudiated the decisions of the predecessors in Rome or The Hague, but nor have they given the go-ahead for the second phase of the Hermès and Columbus projects.

2.       The Ministerial Council of the European Space Agency has adopted two resolutions, one on "the European long term space plan 1992-2005 and the programmes" and the other on "the programmes for observation of the Earth and its environment". (See Appendices).

3.       Amongst the most important decisions of the Ministers is the principle of annual ministerial meetings to "evaluate the progress made by the programmes underway, to consider the impact on these programmes of changes in the world political context, to evaluate the possibilities for widened international co-operation with other space powers, in the first instance in Europe, and to consider the future direction to be taken by the programmes.

4.       Though these annual re-evaluations may facilitate much closer follow-up and political support, they should not inhibit the longer-term commitments required for the execution of the space plan. In this connection the Space Agency must be in a position to issue multi-annual contracts in the industry.

5.       Another important decision, taken in the light of the new geo-political context, is that to "intensify its national co-operation, both among the member states and with other European and non-European partners," and to seek adequate formulas for the purpose. In view of the extent of investment required, space is a field in which international co-operation is vital in order to avoid duplication of effort and the squandering of resources.

6.       The Ministerial Council also emphasised "the need to ensure synergy between the Agency and the European Communities and between the Agency and other European organisations concerned while taken due account of their respective memberships and areas of responsibility". It is in this context that Mr Jean-Marie Luton, Director General of the European Space Agency, was invited to speak to the Assembly during the debate on this report.

THE WORLD SPACE ENVIRONMENT

7.       In May 1991 the relevant sub-committee of the United States House of Representatives rejected the NASA budgetary requests for 1992 in respect of the Space Station Freedom and thus put an end to the programme. However, forceful and well-orchestrated lobbying by figures including Vice-President Dan Quayle, the ESA Director General Jean-Marie Luton and the Executive Vice-President of the Japanese Space Agency induced the House to override its sub-committee (an unusual step) and approve the 1,9 billion dollar appropriation for the space station, extending its life by at least one year.

8.       Since President Reagan launched this space station programme in 1984 and Europe, Canada and Japan accepted his invitation to take part, it has been constantly pruned, having shrunk by comparison with the ambitious 1984 scheme to something more like a celestial motel than a laboratory capable of conducting the scientific research which was the reason for its inception.

9.       The uncertainties of US budgetary procedure make any long term commitment problematic, considering that each year the House of Representatives can cancel any programme (for a one year term). Consequently, the fate which Space Station Freedom narrowly escaped in 1991 may very well befall it next year or the year after. From another point of view, the American space programme was recently re-assessed in the light of the conclusions of the Augustine Committee which had called for the establishment of new priorities with greater emphasis on science, particularly earth observation and the Mission to Planet Earth Project centred on environmental problems.

10.       In what was the Soviet Union, the past objectives of political prestige have been abandoned, giving way to new projects with a more commercial orientation. The uncertainty over the future of the ex-Soviet Union is also reflected in its space programme, whose likely developments nobody is able to predict. One thing is certain: in a country where everything is in short supply and famine looms for the coming winter, it is increasingly difficult to justify the huge investments needed to carry on a space policy.

11.       The other countries with pretentions to a presence in space, Japan, China, India, Brazil, etc. (Canada is an associate member of the ESA) are developing their capacities at a much slower rate than was forecast two or three years ago and seem to have abandoned all idea of an independent capability for manned space flights.

12.       The changes in the overall political environment in Europe, and in particular the reunification of Germany, have led to new financial constraints for the member States of ESA, which to some extent justified calls for the staggering in time of the European long term space programme.

13.       Nevertheless, as the Director General of ESA said in a recent interview1, "There are limits which should not be exceeded. If the major space programmes are too spaced out, the fixed charges will not be reduced, and at a certain point it would be necessary to start again, since the techniques would have developed and the teams would have departed to more rewarding projects".

14.       In Europe, as in the United States, the general public has become much more sensitive to problems of the environment and this trend is evident in the priorities of the politicians. This, therefore, is the international context at the time of the meeting of the Ministerial Council of the European Space Agency.

THE LONG-TERM EUROPEAN SPACE PLAN

15.       The long-term European space plan, which was adopted in Rome in January 1985, ratified in The Hague in November 1987 and confirmed in Munich in 1991, covers essentially three major projects to constitute the European space infrastructure: Ariane 5, Hermès and Columbus. These three projects are part of the optional programmes of ESA.

16.       Ariane 5, a high performance launcher suitable for commercial launches and low orbit manned missions, is the newest member of the family which has proved its worth. The first test flight of Ariane 1 took place in 1979, followed by Ariane 2 and 3 in 1984. Ariane 4 (first flight in 1988) is responsible for the commercial success of the European launchers. Ariane 5 will be capable of boosting the turn of the century satellites into orbit under more economical conditions. It will also launch the European space plane Hermès. The development costs of Ariane 5 are estimated at 4371 MUC which, according to the intentions of the participating states, is covered to the extent of 98.7%.

17.       Hermès is the central element of the manned missions, a space plane built to carry crews and payloads into space, bring them back to earth and provide them with support during their in-orbit work. The chief function of Hermès is to service the Columbus astronomical laboratory, but it will also be able to fly missions to the Freedom International Space Station or the Soviet station, Mir, and perform free flights for experimentation in orbit. Development of the Hermès programme will cost 7320 MUC, 99,8% of which is covered.

18.       The Columbus programme comprises European participation in the Freedom International Space Station. It will be made up of three segments: a permanently manned laboratory which will be one of the four pressurised cylindrical modules forming the core of the station, a free-flying laboratory physically separated from the rest of the station but co-orbiting in its vicinity and regularly serviced by a crew flown in on the Hermès space plane, and lastly a polar platform, completely free-flying on a different (polar) orbit and scanning the entire surface of the earth. The development costs for this programme are estimated at 5066 MUC, 3% of which remains to be covered.

19.       The three programmes Ariane 5, Hermès and Columbus thus form a coherent whole and represent the core of an independent space capability for Europe. However, while the Ariane 5 programme has already been given the green light (in The Hague) the Ministerial Council in Munich, whilst signifying its agreement to the continuation in 1992 of work on the development programmes for Hermès, Columbus and the data-relay system programme element (DRS) has given itself a further year before "finally" pronouncing on the desirability of continuing the in-orbit infrastructure programmes. A decision should be taken at the next Ministerial Council meeting of ESA which will probably take place in Spain before the end of the year.

CONCLUSION

20.       Today strategic and prestige considerations are no longer sufficient to justify a long term and inevitably costly space plan, and the prospects for scientific progress and economic benefits from research and manufacture in a weightless atmosphere may appear somewhat distant. However, your rapporteurs are of the opinion that Europe cannot afford not to be present in space. In addition to the five reasons set out in paragraph 4 of the draft Resolution, there is the example of the past: who would have thought twenty years ago that investments in satellites and their launchers would one day be profitable?

21.       Nevertheless, satellites play a vital part in our daily lives; thanks to them we can telephone from one continent to another, chose between many television channels and obtain photographs to provide better understanding and forecasting of meteorological conditions. Apart from the innumerable practical applications of satellites, the scientific applications should not be forgotten: although their results are generally less well known to the public, everyone remembers the success of the Giotto mission in its rendez-vous with Halley's comet.

22.       All this has been made possible by years of scientific research and technological development in the European Space Agency and its predecessors, ELDO and ESRO.

23.       For this reason we ask the Assembly, whilst remaining vigilant, to put trust in the European Space Agency in the pursuit of its mission and to congratulate it for its successes in the launching and operation of Olympus, Giotto, Hipparcos, Météosat, the Space Telescope, Ulysses and ERS-1.

24.       The first European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-1), launched last May, is the forerunner of a new generation of space missions which promises to make a substantial contribution to scientific study of our environment. The Along-Track Scanning Radiometer that forms one part of ERS-1's payload is the most accurate infrared radiometer ever to fly in space. By measuring the surface temperature of the world's oceans and providing data on cloud distribution, it is designed to make an important contribution to climate research.

25.       Although ERS-1 represents a major step forward, its potential both for research and for applications can only be fully realised if the continuity of its important and unique data can be assured for the long term. Consequently, a follow-on satellite, ERS-2, has already been approved for launch in 1994.

26.       The problems of the environment today concern all our member States. The European policy for observation of the Earth conducted by the Space Agency should constitute Europe's contribution to the global process of development of knowledge on matter such as the warming of the planet, changes in the climate and the reduction of the ozone layer.

27.       The first polar-orbiting Earth observation mission (POEM-1) approved by the Ministers in Munich is placed along these lines. This mission should, inter alia, provide for continuity of the observations started with the ERS satellites, extend the range of parameters observed to increase our knowledge of the factors determining the environment and provide a demonstration flight opportunity for polar operational meteorological payloads.

References

-       Report on European space policy: towards an independent capability for manned space flights for Europe, presented to the Assembly by Mr Wilkinson on behalf of the Committee on Science and Technology.

-       "The Agency's current and future policy"

Article by J-M Luton, Director General of the European Space Agency, published in ESA Bulletin No. 66, May 1991.

-       Science and Government Report, Washington, 1991.

-       Space, Volume 7, No. 5, September-October 1991.

-       Space Markets, Vol. 7, No 3, May-June 1991.

-       ESQ: miscellaneous documentation.

A P P E N D I X I

EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY

COUNCIL

RESOLUTION ON THE EUROPEAN LONG-TERM

SPACE PLAN 1992-2005 AND PROGRAMMES

(adopted on 20 November 1991)

      The Council meeting at ministerial level

      RECALLING Resolution ESA/C-M/LXVII/Res. 1 (Final) on the European Long-Term Space Plan adopted on 31 January 1985 and Resolution ESA/C-M/LXXX/Res.1 (Final) on the European Long-Term Space Plan and programmes adopted on 10 November 1987,

      CONSCIOUS of the need for a careful ongoing analysis of the changing geopolitical context in order to assess its impact on European space activities,

      RECOGNISING the need to achieve the best possible relationship between cost and effectiveness requirements, in particular through a widened and strengthened co-operation with states that have already developed advanced space technologies, while keeping European efforts within an acceptable financial framework,

      RECALLING the mission of the Agency to formulate and implement a long-term European space policy as part of the European drive to develop high technology and to further space activities for the benefit of science and applications,

      CONSCIOUS of the need to ensure synergy between the Agency and the European Communities and between the Agency and other European organisations concerned while taking due account of their respective memberships and areas of responsibility,

      RECOGNISING the successful development of co-operation with the United States of America on the International Space Station,

      WELCOMING the renewal of the Association Agreement with Finland and Finland's stated intention to become a full member of the Agency on 1 January 1995,

      WELCOMING the continuation of co-operation with Canada on the basis of the renewed close co-operation agreement,

      CONSIDERING that the European science programme has yielded remarkable results over a number of years and that Resolution ESA/C/XCIII/Res. 2 (Final) of 13 December 1990 has confirmed the increase in the level of resources allocated to that programme while proposing that measures be taken to increase the purchasing power of its annual budgets,

      RECOGNISING that exploitation of the elements developed under the programmes making up the in-orbit infrastructure will give Europe mastery of the basic technologies for crewed spaceflight and provide exceptional resources with a view to multidisciplinary scientific use,

      NOTING that the implementation of the Agency's Earth observation programmes contributes to the formulation of a European long-term policy in this field,

      WELCOMING the launch and operation since the 1987 meeting in The Hague of Olympus, Giotto, Hipparcos, Meteosat, the Space Telescope, Ulysses and ERS-1,

      NOTING with satisfaction the continuing success of the Ariane-4 operational launches following successful qualification tests and the progress made on Ariane-5 development, while RECOGNISING the need for a European launcher system, for continuing support to the corresponding production programmes and for preferential use of this system by European user programmes,

      EXPRESSING its satisfaction at the outcome of the work done by the Council Working Group on the preparation of this ministerial meeting, in particular the draft resolutions, which it regards as the basis for further progress in optimising the Agency's programmes,

      HAVING REGARD to the level of resources adopted for the period 1990-1995 (ESA/C/XCIII/Res. 3 (Final) of 13 December 1990),

      HAVING REGARD to the Director General's proposal for a European long-term space programme (ESA/C-M(91)2) and the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 (ESA/C(91)38).

CHAPTER I

(Objectives)

1.       REAFFIRMS in their entirety the agreed objectives referred to in Chapter I of Resolution ESA/C-M/LXXX/Res. 1 (Final) of 10 November 1987, which are reproduced for reference in the annex to this resolution, stressing that those objectives were designed to further the principles contained in the Convention and represented a comprehensive undertaking touching upon all fields of space activity pursued by the Agency,

2.       RECOGNISES that the extensive and valuable experience gained in carrying out the programmes undertaken since 1987 has confirmed the relevance of the objectives referred to above, and has provided sound and reasonable guidelines for those programmes, as well as a suitable basis for their better evaluation,

3.       REAFFIRMS the need to intensify international co-operation, both among the member states and with other European and non-European partners, with a view to achieving fully the objectives of the European long-term space plan with the best possible relationship between the cost and effectiveness requirements, while optimising the use of European space resources available within the Agency and the member states,

4.       INVITES the Director General to continue to improve the balance between the infrastructure, scientific research and applications programmes, such as telecommunications and earth observation, that will match the expectations of the member states, while ensuring a proper relationship between technology, research and development, exploitation and utilisation activities.

CHAPTER II

(European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005)

1.       WELCOMES the Director General's proposal for a European long-term space programme and the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 referred to in the preamble,

2.       ACCEPTS the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 as a strategic framework for the Agency's planning, activities and programmes, and RECOGNISES that the Director General's proposal mentioned above provides the guidance needed for satisfactory implementation of this plan,

3.       CONSIDERING the strategic importance for Europe of the above-mentioned plan and the duration of the corresponding commitments, AGREES in principle to meet each year at ministerial level, on the next occasion before the end of 1992; and INTENDS, at those meetings, to evaluate the progress made by the programmes under way, to consider the impact on these programmes of changes in the world political context, to evaluate the possibilities for widened international co-operation with other space powers, in the first instance in Europe, and to consider the future direction to be taken by the programmes,

4.       RECOGNISES that the said plan allows the member states concerned to take part in other programmes such as the GSTP (General Support Technology Programme), for which the Director General is invited to submit an enabling resolution, as well as in any further programmes that he may propose with a view to complete achievement of the objectives of the plan.

CHAPTER III

(In-orbit infrastructure programmes)

      CONSIDERING the progress made since the Council meeting at ministerial level in The Hague in 1987 in defining the technical, timetable and cost element objectives of the Hermes, Columbus and data-relay system (DRS) in-orbit infrastructure development programmes,

      RECOGNISING nonetheless that the pursuit of activities relating to these programmes must take account of changes since that meeting in factors that are likely to affect their execution, such as the changes that have taken place in the overall political environment in Europe and the new financial constraints within the member states,

      CONSIDERING, without prejudice to the evaluation provided for in Chapter IV of this resolution, the need to maintain the objectives of the overall coherence of these programmes and in particular the dates for launching their respective elements,

      WELCOMING the will shown by the states participating in the said programmes to continue with their execution within the framework of the Director General's proposal for a European long-term space programme and of the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 referred to in the preamble,

1.       AGREES that, bearing in mind the evaluation provided for in Chapter IV of this resolution, the Agency shall carry out these programmes in 1992 within an overall budgetary envelope reduced by 120 MAU in contributions from the amount proposed by the Director General (2427 MAU), to give revised contributions totalling 2307 MAU (at 1990 economic conditions), and REQUESTS the Director General to allocate the reduced budgets in accordance with programme needs and to distribute the work to be performed in 1992 in an equitable manner, taking due account of those firms that are not assuming prime contractorship responsibilities for those programmes,

2.       AGREES to continue work in 1992 under the Hermes and Columbus development programmes and the data-relay system programme element within the framework of the proposals for those programmes and the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 referred to in the preamble, taking into account the evaluation due to take place in late 1992, and to do so in accordance with the respective contribution percentages agreed to by the states participating in those programmes and with the new levels of contribution to the data-relay system programme element declared by France and Germany at this meeting,

      NOTES further that the work to be undertaken under the programmes referred to in this paragraph shall be organised in such a way as to ensure continuity of activities and adherence to the development timetables,

3.       INVITES the states participating in these programmes to adopt the corresponding draft budgets by the end of 1991 and AGREES that the present resolution shall constitute the legal basis for their adoption and execution,

4.       INVITES the Director General to present the terms of a proposal for an optional programme of Columbus precursor flights in order to prepare for utilisation of the Columbus in-orbit infrastructure, seeking a balance between the infrastructure and utilisation programmes, and INVITES the states concerned to draw up the legal instruments that will enable these activities to be started before mid-1992,

5.       AGREES to assess the situation of those in-orbit infrastructure programmes in the light of the report drawn up by the Director General in accordance with the provisions of Chapter IV below,

6.       INVITES the Director General to further pursue, in time for the Council meeting at ministerial level in late 1992, optimisation of the costs of the validation and exploitation of the in-orbit infrastructure programmes and submit proposals for the sharing of these costs among the member states,

7.       NOTES the proposals made on the decentralised ground infrastructure given in ESA/C-WG(91)WP/49 rev. 1, which is an annex to the European Long-Term Space Plan and which was submitted by the Council Working Group to Council for adoption (ESA/C(91)95).

CHAPTER IV

(Evaluation and confirmation of the in-orbit infrastructure

and earth observation programmes)

1.       INVITES the Director General to submit, in time for the Council meeting at ministerial level, in late 1992, a report on the situation of the in-orbit infrastructure and earth observation programmes being carried out within the Agency. The said report shall show in particular the impact on the Agency's objectives and programmes as a whole of the possibilities for international co-operation, in the first instance in Europe, with a view to improving the overall cost-effectiveness of the Agency's activities. Finally, the report shall describe the status of the various programmes in terms of their final development objectives, their technical and time-scheduling coherence, and their estimated cost-at-completion,

      STRESSES its intention to set up, at a subsequent meeting at delegate level, a working group to consider on an ad hoc basis the international aspects of such co-operation and to report to Council so that the Director General can take its findings into account in his report referred to in this paragraph,

2.       INVITES the Director General to formulate such proposals for adjustment of those programmes as may be judged necessary in order to ensure their proper execution and an equitable industrial involvement, while keeping the balance between development and user programmes,

3.       INVITES the states participating in the in-orbit infrastructure and earth observation programmes to take, in the light of the report and of any adjustment proposals as referred to above, such decisions as are necessary to permit their continuation, in accordance with the relevant provisions of Annex III to the Convention; and

      AGREES that the decisions in question shall be taken at the meeting of Council at ministerial level due to be held in late 1992.

CHAPTER V

(Industrial policy)

1.       RECALLS that the objectives of the Agency's industrial policy defined in Article VII of the Convention and Annex V thereto determine the rules and procedures for implementing that policy,

2.       REAFFIRMS the objective, when distributing contracts, of achieving a return coefficient as near as possible to the ideal value of one for all countries and that this must be achieved on the basis of all the Agency's programmes as provided for in Article IV paragraph 3 of Annex V to the Convention,

3.       TAKES NOTE of the results of the formal review of the geographical distribution of contracts and associated return coefficients for the period 1988-1990 that was held in January 1991 and RECALLS that, pursuant to Article IV paragraph 5 and Article V of Annex V to the Convention, such a formal review must take place every three years,

4.       DECIDES as a measure of conservation that the lower limit referred to in Article IV paragraph 6 of Annex V to the Convention, below which special measures are to be taken, shall be kept at 0,95 for the present three-year period (1991-1993),

      AGREES to consider, at the meeting of Council at ministerial level scheduled for late 1992, increasing the said limit to 0,96 with retroactive effect over the period 1991-1993 and applying it also to the following three-year period (1994-1996); and

      DECIDES that, in addition to this limit, the ratio between the deficit observed at the end of each period covered by the formal review and the annual contributions for the last year of that period shall be taken into account in determining whether special measures are to be taken,

5.       CONFIRMS the guidelines and measures concerning the Agency's industrial policy which were decided upon by the Council meeting at ministerial level at The Hague and are described in Chapter IV of resolution ESA/C-M/LXXX/Res. 1 (Final), including the guarantee for all participating states of a return coefficient above 0,9 at the end of each optional programme,

6.       ACCEPTS that special measures be applied in favour of Italy, in accordance with the procedures in force, for an amount corresponding to the figure that would have been necessary to bring its return coefficient to 0,95 at the end of September 1991, on the understanding that the said measures shall be applied progressively within the framework of implementation of the long-term plan in the period 1992-1995,

7.       INVITES the Director General to provide in future, in addition to the information relating to the geographical distribution of contracts already provided, a predicted overall return coefficient with the aim of assessing the trend in the industrial return situation of each country more accurately,

8.       RECOMMENDS that all necessary measures be taken in accordance with Article VII of the Convention to improve the competitiveness of European space industry and increase its share of the world market,

9.       CONSIDERS that the involvement of the private sector in the use of available capacities, and in financing and operating responsibilities, should be encouraged.

EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY

COUNCIL

RESOLUTION ON THE EUROPEAN LONG-TERM SPACE PLAN

AND PROGRAMMES (ESA/C-M/LXXX/Res. 1 (Final)

adopted on 10 November 1987 in The Hague (Chapter I)


CHAPTER I

(Objectives)

1.       REAFFIRMS the agreed objectives as described in Chapter I of the Resolution ESA/C-M/LXVII/Res. 1 (Final) adopted on 31 January 1985, these being in particular:

-       to pursue a European space programme as a coherent whole, with the spending on the tools needed for space activities and on the activities themselves appropriately balanced;

-       to expand the horizons of space research and exploitation in Europe;

-       to enable the European scientific community, via an expansion of the scientific programme, to remain in the vanguard of space research;

-       to develop further the potential of space in the area of telecommunications and meteorology;

-       to prepare a substantial contribution of space and ground techniques to earth observation sciences and applications and, if so required, prepare for the setting-up of operational systems and of user-oriented organisations to operate them;

-       to improve the competitiveness of European industry in applications areas by means of advanced development of space systems and technology;

-       to promote, via a substantial microgravity research programme (eg materials sciences, life sciences and fluid physics) for practical applications in space;

-       to strengthen the European space transportation capability, meeting foreseeable future user requirements both inside and outside Europe, and remaining competitive with space transportation systems that exist or are planned elsewhere;

-       to prepare autonomous European facilities for the support of man in space, for the transport of equipment and crews and for making use of low earth orbits;

-       to enhance international co-operation and in particular aim at a partnership with the United States through a significant participation in an international space station,

2.       NOTES the advent of new space capabilities and new techniques and the emergence of further promising applications,

3.       CONSIDERS that an additional effort is needed to ensure that Europe keeps up with other space powers beyond the year 2000 and to ensure that Europe is capable of all space applications,

4.       APPROVES the objective of reinforcing the current European capability in order to achieve as far as possible by the end of this century the capability needed for access to and return from space for manned missions and for servicing payloads, and in order to provide for men living and working in space; NOTES the importance of continuing studies and technology programmes concerning future European space transportation systems which will take into account studies carried out in member states nationally and concerning the expansion of the European in-orbit infrastructure in order to render it fully autonomous,

5.       SEES it as important for Europe to be able to respond to new scientific and applications prospects of space, to acquire new scientific and high technology knowledge and to be able to remain competitive in new markets and to increase its ability as a valuable partner in international co-operation in exploring and making use of space,

6.       SEES these efforts as a source of new opportunities offered to the private sector, which should be encouraged to make use of the available capacity, participate in the investment and take over operating responsibilities. WELCOMES the fact that the Director General is actively pursuing in particular the studies on the possibility of the private sector taking part in the funding of Data Relay Satellite.

A P P E N D I X I I

EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY

COUNCIL

RESOLUTION ON PROGRAMMES FOR OBSERVATION

OF THE EARTH AND ITS ENVIRONMENT

(adopted on 20 November 1991)

      The Council, meeting at ministerial level,

      WHEREAS by Resolution ESA/C-M/LXXX/Res. 1 (Final), approved on 10 November 1987, it welcomed and endorsed pursuance of the Agency's activities and programmes in the field of earth observation,

      EXPRESSING satisfaction at the successful launch and operation of the ERS-1 satellite, and the approval of the ERS-2 Programme; and NOTING that such missions will make a major contribution to the understanding of the global environment and a significant European contribution to International Space Year,

      HAVING REGARD to the successful co-operation between the Agency and Eumetsat in developing and operating the geostationary Meteosat satellites,

      WELCOMING the continuation of research and development work within the Agency on new generations of space systems such as future missions in polar orbit designed to study the earth and its environment, as part of the European long-term space policy entrusted to the Agency,

      HAVING REGARD to the preparatory programme for the first earth observation mission in polar orbit (POEM-1) and to the Director General's proposal for a POEM-1 programme (ESA/PB-EO(91)68) and a preparatory programme for follow-on POEM missions (ESA/PB-EO(91)69), and to the Aristoteles programme proposal (ESA/PB-EO(91)1, rev. 1),

      CONSIDERING that these activities and programmes of the Agency foster the successful implementation of a coherent and effective European long-term earth observation policy, as well as forming part of the international action being taken on studying the earth and its environment and laying the foundation for independent operational systems in the future,

      HAVING REGARD to the Resolution on the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 and programmes (ESA/C-M/XCVII/Res. 1 (Final) of 20 November 1991),

      HAVING REGARD to Articles V.1 (b) and XI.5 (c) of the ESA Convention, and Annex III thereto.

CHAPTER I

(International dimension of earth observation)

1.       RECOGNISES the growing awareness of the need to protect the environment and the various initiatives being taken in this area and the crucial role for satellite observations in understanding, monitoring and managing the earth's resources,

2.       NOTES that satellite measurements are essential to the success of global environmental monitoring and research programmes, including the World Climate Research Programme, the International Geosphere Biosphere Programme and the proposal for a Global Climate Observing System,

3.       NOTES that the crucial importance of the earth observation programmes, with guaranteed continuity, for understanding and systematically observing the climate system was emphasised by the Second World Climate Conference in Geneva in November 1990, by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in its First Assessment Report in 1990, and again during the ongoing negotiations under the auspices of the United Nations on a future Climate Convention,

4.       NOTES that the importance of monitoring and understanding the environment through earth observation programmes will be considered at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in June 1992,

5.       RECOGNISES the importance of remote-sensing data from space for socio-economic development in member states and throughout the world including the developing countries, and the need for the Agency to contribute to the development of user communities in close co-ordination with other European organisations,

6.       RECOMMENDS all member states actively to pursue consistent implementation of the objectives of a European long-term earth observation policy in the framework of other international organisations and institutions, and to establish an effective European contribution to an international programme of long-term climate monitoring,

7.       INVITES the Director General to establish fruitful co-operation with Eumetsat, with the European Communities and their Environmental Agency, as well as with other European organisations, and to seek appropriate international arrangements for involving such organisations in the development of the future European earth observations systems,

8.       UNDERLINES that the programmes referred to in this resolution constitute a significant European contribution to international efforts to develop space-based observation of the earth's resources, and to an international earth observation system.

CHAPTER II

(The European Earth observation policy)

1.       RECOGNISES that the Agency has successfully developed and run Earth observation systems in the course of its activities and programmes and has thereby demonstrated the knowledge and expertise needed for co-operation among European states in research and development work on future space systems intended for scientific and operational purposes,

2.       CONSIDERS that the Agency's activities and programmes in the field of observation of the Earth and its environment should be given high priority for the successful implementation of a coherent and effective European Earth observation policy,

3.       ENDORSES the Agency's contribution to the development of a European Earth observation policy aimed at increasing Europe's capability to monitor both regional and global environmental phenomena and at furthering the understanding of such matters as global warming, climate change and ozone depletion,

4.       STRESSES that the Agency's Earth observation programmes will address the requirements of the user communities, which call for a European segment of a global environmental data network. STRESSES further that this policy should be closely co-ordinated with the appropriate national and European bodies such as the Commission of the European Communities, and be such as to encourage private commercial users' enterprises and to ensure the widest availability, in the proper formats, of remote-sensing data from space from all sources for the various users entities, with particular regard to the environmental needs of regional, national and European entities,

5.       RECOGNISES that the experience already gained by means of the Earthnet system can be regarded as a foundation on which such a network can be built, and INVITES the Director General, at the appropriate time, to propose an optional Earthnet programme to ensure the continuity of existing activities to meet this expanding requirement in accordance with the Agency's long-term space plan,

6.       RECOGNISES the maturity of the ARISTOTELES programme proposal and notes the intention to fly a package of instruments selected for precise mapping of the Earth's gravitational and magnetic fields under co-operative ESA/NASA arrangements. ENCOURAGES the Director General to explore further the possibilities of continuing ongoing activities with a view to ultimately presenting the programme proposal to member states for their consideration on a timescale consistent with scientific requirements,

7.       RECOGNISES the successful co-operation with Eumetsat and INVITES the Director General to continue this co-operation in the context of the future use of the First Polar Platform; INVITES the Director General to continue to co-operate closely with Eumetsat on the further definition and development of the second generation Meteosat system, taking into due account the resolution of the Eumetsat Council of 30 October 1991; and further INVITES the Director General to present in due time to the Council a programme proposal within the financial provisions of the European Long-Term Space Plan and consistent with the continuing operational responsibilities of Eumetsat,

8.       SEEKS the Director General's guidance in exploring the possibility of adding the science and research part of the Earth observation programmes to the mandatory activities of the Agency,

9.       INVITES all member states and associate states to participate in the activities and programmes designed to implement and further develop a coherent European Earth observation policy.

CHAPTER III

(POEM-1 programme)

1.       APPROVES execution of the first polar-orbiting Earth observation mission (POEM-1) programme within the framework of the Agency, on the basis of the Director General's proposal referred to above, using the Columbus Polar Platform as a technical basis, and exploiting the data relay system (DRS), in order to acquire global data coverage. This programme will be carried out in two phases in accordance with Annex III to the Convention,

2.       NOTES that this first mission has the following primary objectives:

a.       to provide for continuity of the observations started with the ERS satellites, including those obtained from radar-based observations;

b.       to extend the range of parameters observed to meet the need to increase knowledge of the factors determining the environment;

c.       to provide a demonstration flight opportunity for a polar operational meteorological payload package provided by Eumetsat;

and further NOTES that those will be achieved by developing

d.       a package of instruments selected via the ongoing POEM-1 preparatory programme, aimed at meeting the need to observe the Earth and its atmosphere from space in synergetic fashion, addressing such matters as global warming, climate change, operational meteorology, ozone depletion and ocean and ice monitoring;

e.       a ground segment including a mission management and planning centre, an operation control centre and a reception, archiving, cataloguing and user access system taking also into account the model of the present ESA ground infrastructure serving inter alia ERS-1,

3.       AGREES that the first phase will run until end 1992. The decision to move to Phase 2 will be taken in the light of the report drawn up by the Director General in accordance with the provisions of Chapter IV of the resolution on the European Long-Term Space Plan 1992-2005 and programmes adopted on 20 November 1991. This report will include the proposal of the Director General for the final platform decision taking into account aspects of international co-operation and the most cost effective means to meet the mission objectives,

4.       NOTES that the cost of the POEM-1 programme, including its exploitation and the associated ground segment, is estimated at 929 MAU (at 1990 economic conditions), assuming inclusion in the payload of a SAR/AMI instrument. However, if it is technically feasible in the light of studies under the POEM-1 preparatory programme to include an advanced SAR in the payload of POEM-1 while maintaining the schedule of the mission, the Director General will present a technical and financial proposal for such an inclusion;

      RECORDS the statements on intended participation contained in the Annex to this resolution,

5.       INVITES Eumetsat to confirm within six months its commitment to provide at no cost to the Agency the operational meteorological instruments, the associated communications package and the related ground segment for processing, disseminating and archiving the data. The Agency will then take responsibility for integrating the instruments and communication package on to the Polar Platform.

6.       INVITES interested member states to expedite finalisation of the corresponding Declaration and implementing rules and take all other steps needed for the POEM-1 programme to start as early as possible so as to ensure continuity with the POEM-1 preparatory programme.

CHAPTER IV

(Preparatory programme for follow-on

polar-orbiting Earth observation missions)

1.       INVITES the Director General to prepare a programme proposal for a preparatory programme for the development of the necessary technologies in order to provide for flight continuity beyond POEM-1, and to present it in due time to member states for their consideration before the end of 1992,

2.       NOTES in particular that this peparatory programme for the follow-on polar-orbiting Earth observation missions is planned to include:

a.       studies to define the mission objectives and implementation alternatives;

b.       technological investigations and critical hardware developments to support the candidate instruments, including future advanced imaging radar options, such as ASAR (if not flown on POEM-1), a multi-frequency SAR, and others;

c.       assessment of the options for the flight of Announcement of Opportunity Instruments including Earth and space science instruments;

d.       procurement of long-lead items for the follow-on missions,

3.       NOTES that this programme is also planned to include, in co-operation with Eumetsat, studies to determine the optimum long-term solution for the flight of operational meteorological instruments in polar orbit. These should explore the potential for synergy between such operational instruments and instrumentation required for long-term climate monitoring.

Annex

      The delegations declare their intention to participate in the POEM-1 programme and to subscribe the corresponding programme Declaration as follows:

Scale of contributions of the POEM-1 programme:

Participating state

Scale (%)

    Austria

    Belgium

    Denmark

    France

    Germany

    Italy

    Netherlands

    Norway

    Spain

    Sweden

    Switzerland

    United Kingdom

    Finland

    Canada

    1

    2,72

    1

    0-20

    22

    16

    2-3

    1-1,5

    0-12

    up to 6

    4

    up to 25

    0-1,6

    2,6

Indicative schedule of payment appropriations

1990 E.C.

92

93

94

95

96

97

98

99

00

01

02

03

Total

POEM-1

40

72

115

121

121

112

100

73

47

47

46

35

929

Reporting committee: Committee on Science and Technology

Budgetary implications for the Assembly: None

Reference to committee: Resolution 899 (1988), and Doc. 6519, Reference No. 1759 of 25 November 1991.

Draft resolution: Adopted by the committee on 15 January 1992 by 19 votes for, 0 against and 2 abstentions.

Members of the committee: Mr Bassinet (Chairman), Lord Rodney, Mr Aarts (Vice-Chairmen), Mrs Arnold, MM. Atasever, Berger, Bohl (Alternate: Birraux), de Bondt, Borderas (Alternate: Palacios), Brito, Fulvio Caccia, Dees, Dimmer, Mrs Falcucci, MM. Fourré, Guizzi, Olof Johansson, Kalos, Kitt (Alternate: Fahey), Albrecht Konecny, Koulouris (Alternate: Pahtas), Lambie, Lenzer, Lopez Valdivielso, Lotz, Martino, Mészáros, Moreira, Mrs Nybakk, MM. Portelli, Probst, Mrs Ragnarsdottir, MM. Schädler, Schmid (Alternate: Pawkowicz), Sedlak, Seeuws, Svensson (Alternate: Lars Gustafsson), Donald Thompson, Tiuri, N ... (Alternate: Scheer)

N.B.: The names of the members who attended the meeting are underlined.

Secretaries to the committee: MM. Perin and Ary.


1 1 "Le Monde" of 13 November 1991.