Environmental Sensing and Monitoring Technologies: Global Markets

Published - Jun 2009| Analyst - Kevin Gainer| Code - IAS030A
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Report Highlights

  • The global market for environmental sensing and monitoring technologies was worth $9.1 billion in 2008 and an estimated $10.1 billion in 2009. This should reach $13 billion in 2014, for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.2%.
  • Radon, GPS, remote sensing and new technologies have the largest share of the market, generating $4.9 billion in 2008 and an estimated $5.1 billion in 2009. This segment is expected to be worth $6.8 billion in 2014, for a CAGR of 6.2%.
  • Terrestrial sensing and monitoring technologies combine for the second-largest market share, generating $2.6 billion in 2008 and an estimated $2.7 billion in 2009. This is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.7% to reach $3.4 billion in 2014.


The global environmental remediation and monitoring business is huge. In just the United States market, each year some $250 billion of economic output stems from all pollution control and monitoring activities. Among the faster-growing segments of this “clean-up” business is the market for sophisticated sensors, monitoring equipment, large-scale networks such as satellite, GPS and remote sensing, associated networking equipment and ancillaries, and a large slate of new technologies. Globally, the markets for environmental sensors and the related sub-segments noted above (e.g., monitoring, networks, remote sensing, etc.), account for approximately $10 billion of economic activity at present with a projected average annual growth of 5% through 2014.
The purpose of this report is to measure and forecast the demand for sensor equipment, systems, and networks that are sold for terrestrial, oceanic, and atmospheric environmental sensing. The report defines markets for sensors and/or sensor “systems”, including monitoring networks and, separately, defines markets for the advanced materials and advanced sensor concepts that represent markets of the future. In regard to cutting edge developments, nanotechnology, where considerable EPA research dollars have been expended, is covered. An additional purpose of this report is to assess the needs of long-term environmental monitoring applications and to summarize the capabilities of emerging sensor technologies.
Environmental sensors come in a thousand or more forms and are based on a wide range of physical and chemical principles, and with various types of usable outputs. Typical contaminants monitored for are metals, volatile organic compounds, biological contaminants, and radioisotopes. The field applications of sensors are extremely varied, too. Among the key trends in the environmental sensors business is miniaturization (down to the nano scale), continuous and/or real time sensing capabilities, wireless networked operation, rapid processing, and increased sensitivity or flexibility. Examples of report environmental focus areas include: vehicular emissions, combustion of fossil fuels, agricultural runoff, industrial and mine waste disposal, ocean spills and dumping, as well as climate change and weather monitoring.
Environmental sensors and monitoring technologies have not only become a substantial high technology business but future growth is almost pre-ordained due to the fact that economies around the world will either have to manage their environmental impact or eventually destroy themselves. At the same time that environmental clean-up is more or less forced onto the policy-making agenda, technology revolutions in nanotechnology, semiconductors (lab-on-a-chip) and communications are facilitating sensor product development and implementation.
This BCC study focuses on key environmental sensor technologies and applications, and provides data about the size and growth of numerous sensor markets, company profiles and industry trends. Cutting edge developments, research priorities and potential business opportunities are a key focus.
The report contains coverage of: 
  • The environmental sensor industry and its structure, and the many companies involved in providing these products.
  • The markets for environmental sensors including passive, active, electromechanical and semiconductors.
  • Sensor applications in, for example, temperature sensing and chemical detection. 
  • Company profiles including overseas manufacturers.
  • Patent activity.


With its broad scope and in-depth analyses, this study will prove to be a valuable resource, particularly for anyone involved with or interested in the environmental sensors. It will be particularly useful for researchers, laboratory and government personnel working in research or company settings, as well as business professionals, such as marketing managers, strategic planners, forecasters, new product and business developers, who are involved with most aspects of the sensors industry. It also will be of value to potential investors and members of the general public who are interested in acquiring a business-oriented view of the use of sensors in environmental monitoring. The projections, forecasts and trend analyses found in this report provide readers with the necessary data and information for decision-making.
The research methodology was both quantitative and qualitative in nature. Market data was derived from trade sources, self reported data by companies, and government statistics covering the pollution control markets and the sensor/instrumentation markets. The most recent academic literature on environmental sensors was reviewed. Other key market information sources include sensor magazines and journals and related books, trade literature, marketing literature, other product/promotional literature, annual reports, security analyst reports, government and other publications. A patent search and analysis was conducted.
As is the case with most high technology industries and economic sectors, data resources analyzing sensor technologies have become vast. There are numerous referred journals devoted solely to sensor technology, not to mention environmental journals that report on larger systems issues or strategic/economic issues in environmental management. Data sources that were employed include government economic/output data, press releases on the company websites including application news, company news, marketing news, product news, brochures, product literature, sensor magazines, technical journals, technical books, marketing literature, other promotional literature, annual reports, security analyst reports, and other sensor business digest publications. An extensive patent analysis was conducted to gauge technological innovation and to determine research activity as it applies to new product development.
Research analyst Kevin Gainer is the former Managing Editor of the BCC Journal, ENERGY. He holds both B.A. and M.A. degrees in quantitative Economic Analysis, with a minor in Environmental Science, and has 25 years of economics and market research experience including 9 years as an Energy Analyst at American Electric Power Corp. He is the author of five published books and dozens of technical papers, analyses and studies published in conference proceedings and many unpublished within corporations. He has worked as Research Editor at BCC Research since 1995, and has authored several BCC technology market research reports.
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The information developed in this report is intended to be as reliable as possible at the time of publication and of a professional nature.  This information does not constitute managerial, legal, or accounting advice; nor should it serve as a corporate policy guide, laboratory manual, or an endorsement of any product, as much of the information is speculative in nature. The author assumes no responsibility for any loss or damage that might result from reliance on the reported information or its use.

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