Any movement beneath our feet – from barely perceptible subsidence to the sudden appearance of a sinkhole or a crashing landslide – spells big trouble. Even relatively modest subsidence can weaken buildings and infrastructure and lead to issues such as flooding, and at worst the abrupt disappearance of sections of land brings immediate threat to life. Monitoring and predicting our shifting land is clearly essential for adopting mitigating strategies.

And now, thanks to Europe’s environmental Copernicus programme and the Sentinel-1 radar satellite mission, the first Europe-wide subsidence and soil movement analysis service is available to the public.