11 November 2013, Geneva, Switzerland - A UNOSAT analyst told a TV reporter on Monday that what she could see on the satellite image she was processing looked “very much like a tsunami”. First satellite analysis reports released today by UNOSAT corroborate this impression and in describing the devastating consequences of Typhoon Haiyan UNOSAT refers to towns as “eradicated”.

Reports coming in from the Philippines and satellite imagery analysis converge in illustrating a disaster of vast proportions. According to figures released by OCHA, 9.8 millions people are affected by this emergency, with 2.5 million in need of food aid. The official death toll has reached 1,700 but as many as 10,000 are feared dead.

UNOSAT will continue to coordinate with the EU Emergency Response Centre and to address the needs of the humanitarian agencies involved in the relief operation.

UNOSAT is also appealing to residents in the affected areas to help determine the impact of the Typhoon by sending their photos through the UN-ASIGN application. Photos appear on a web-supported LIVE-map that help agrgegate the geospatial data available in one single internet place.


Images: Above: on 9 November astronaut Karen Nyberg aboard the International Space Station twitted a photo of the super storm while ISS was overflying the Pacific (credit @astrokarenN). Below: the crude reality on the ground as it emerges from satellite imagery released by UNOSAT.