In addition to its role as a hub of international education, Canada also plays a major role in the world’s agricultural production. According to the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), Canada’s agriculture sector generated $108.1 billion in revenue or 6.6 percent of the country’s gross domestic product.
The country uses satellites to help gather data to make the industry more sustainable. The satellites gather information on crop types, condition, estimated crop yields and soil characteristics, which farmers use to inform their decisions.
In September 2017, the CSA worked with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) to invite Canadian universities to help them create sustainable projects related to crop inventory, tillage, soil moisture and land cover.
They created the SOAR program or, Science and Operational Applications Research, and have selected six universities to receive $800,435 to develop new applications and innovative technologies using imagery from Canada’s RADARSAT-2 satellite.
As part of the projects, leads scientists and associate professors will train 22 research students and technicians in sustainable agriculture technology.