Environmental observations are central to documenting the state of our planet and its evolution, as well as to informing the development of products and services (including forecasts) that are used to improve the quality of life for the Earth’s inhabitants. As both Earth science and technology advance while the expectations for the extent, quality, and timeliness of environmental information to be provided to the world’s population increases, the opportunity exists to harness the increased knowledge and capability to improve those products and services. The World Meteorological Organization has made important contributions in making the connection between knowledge and products in the areas of weather, water, and climate through its periodic visions, most recently the Vision for the Global Observing System (GOS) in 2025 (see http://www.wmo.int/pages/prog/www/OSY/WorkingStructure/documents/CBS-2009_Vision-GOS-2025.pdf). The WMO is now in the process of doing an update for the 2040 time frame, taking into account both surface and space-based measurements. In this session, presentations that look ahead to the 2040 time frame and address expected observational capability that can realistically be expected to be available in that time frame, the expected demand for products and services informed by observational data that may be required for public use in that time frame, and mechanisms for connecting the two are all sought. Presentations for this session can address the full range of products for Earth System Science and are not limited to those addressed by the WMO in its development of the 2040 vision.