PARIS — The 2.55 billion euros ($2.9 billion) in contracts for six new Copernicus Earth observation missions that the European Space Agency approved includes a large dose of faith that its Copernicus partner, the European Commission, holds up its end of the bargain.

For ESA, the budget authority for Copernicus was given at last November’s council of ESA ministers, meeting in Seville, Spain. The governments were so enthusiastic about Copernicus that they committed 1.8 billion euros to it — 29% more than ESA had requested:

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