At the Esri User Conference in San Diego we talked about the our Eye on Earth project which consists of a joint partnership between the European Environmental Agency, Esri and Microsoft to build a “Solution Builder” that will allow governments and organizations around the world to upload their enviromnental data to the cloud and then create spatial visualizations for that data in an extremely simple way. This solution will use a combination of ArcGIS Online as well as Windows Azure and SQL Azure for the storage. Here is a link to the current version of Eye on Earth service. In the current version users can visualize and comment on Air and Water quality across Europe. The hope is that this will extend to all kinds of different enviromnental data (biodiversity, invasive plant species, etc) for countries all around the world.
Another key piece of this solution will be DataMarket which will allow these organizations to also share (and in some cases sell) the native data for others to use. This will help increase scientists ability to do statistical analysis on the data.
I will talk more about this solution as we move forward, but for now we have a little more information included in my presentations from the Esri user conference.