The BGS has embraced EU and UK initiatives to increase access to public sector spatial information via its knowledge exchange work.
For example, OpenGeoscience has made BGS data and information available in interoperable formats that can be combined with data from other organisations to improve environmental analysis and decision making.
INSPIRE is a European Union (EU) directive (a legal act) that aims to enhance the sharing of environmental spatial information among public sector organisations and better facilitate public access to environmental information across Europe.
INSPIRE will create a European spatial data infrastructure (SDI) that will enable spatial information to be discovered, viewed and downloaded in order to assist in policy making across boundaries.
The spatial information considered under the directive includes a great variety of themes — one of which is geology.
UK Location is a UK pan-government initiative to improve the sharing and re-use of public sector location information.
INSPIRE and UK Location depends on standardised delivery mechanisms to ensure the integration of spatial information from different contributors.
Data providers need to structure their data according to agreed specifications and deliver it via common protocols. The development of this infrastructure and enabling standards has been a huge community effort in which BGS has played a major role.
Other BGS staff perform the following roles:
BGS has been working for several years with the Scottish Government doing co-funded research on how to set up a Scottish Spatial Data Infrastructure to implement the One Scotland — One Geography initiative. We are also helping the Coal Authority make data freely and openly accessible to the public in accordance with INSPIRE.
Contact Matt Harrison, Science Director Geoscience Products and Services or Dr Richard Hughes, for more information on how BGS can help fulfil your organisation's obligations under INSPIRE and UK Location.
INSPIRE and UK Location will be developed in various stages until 2019. The first major milestone for information providers was to make Discovery Metadata services and WMS view services available for its data holdings and to register them with the UK Location Programme for upward inclusion in INSPIRE by November 2011. Having played a vital role in the testing of the UK Location Programme infrastructure, BGS were one of the first organisations to achieve this goal.
The purpose of INSPIRE and UK Location is to support environmental policy and overcome major barriers still affecting the availability and accessibility of relevant data.
These barriers include:
The key elements of INSPIRE and UK Location to overcome the above barriers include: