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USDA Using Satellites to Monitor Farmers

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posted on Jan, 13 2006 @ 11:25 AM
There is a boom in the use of satellite imagery by government and commercial interests. The USDA is using satellite technology to monitor compliance issues associated with farming and insurance carriers are utilizing the images to detect fraud. But if you think this is a game played only in the US, you might find it surprising to learn that everyone is getting in on the act.
Satellites have monitored crop conditions around the world for decades, helping traders predict futures prices in commodities markets and governments anticipate crop shortages.

But those satellite images are now increasingly turning up in courtrooms across the nation as the Agriculture Department's Risk Management Agency cracks down on farmers involved in crop insurance fraud.

The Agriculture Department's Farm Service Agency, which helps farmers get loans and payments from a number of its programs, also uses satellite imaging to monitor compliance.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

This is an inevitability...and commercial interest will absolutely drive novel uses of satellite imagery.

The article above continues:

Across government and private industry alike, satellite imaging technology is being used in water rights litigation and in prosecution of environmental cases ranging from a hog confinement facility's violations of waste discharge regulations to injury damage lawsuits stemming from herbicide applications. The technology is also used to monitor the forestry and mining industries.

Sound reasonable? Sure... I think...

But will you feel the same when it's your employer? ...home owner association? competitors? ...neighbors?

It's a Brave New World we are entering...

I particularly like the last two paragraphs of the article:

Just as U.S. satellites kept track of things like the wheat harvest in the former Soviet Union, other countries have also launched satellites to monitor American crops. Germany, France and others have satellites monitoring crop conditions, and many other private firms sell those images in the U.S.

"Everybody spies on everybody. I was stunned to hear that myself," Edwards said. "Someday, I may have to rely on a French satellite to convict an American citizen."

"Everybody spies on everybody," ....indeed.

[edit on 13-1-2006 by loam]

[edit on 16-1-2006 by asala]

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