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Google is offering charities and not-for-profit organisations the chance to use Google Earth without paying the earth.

Google Earth Outreach will offer charities an easy way to add Google Earth layers - effectively a personalised version of the application. It includes online training in adding layers, video tutorials and case studies of how other organisations have used layers. There are also moderated forums. Google Earth is a free download but the pro version is $400.

It means charities that choose to use Google Earth to illustrate their websites will be able to do so more cheaply. There have been 200 million downloads of the application.

Back in April Google teamed up with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum to map ethnic cleansing in Darfur.

You can apply for a $400 grant for extra technical support.

Three layers are already available: Global Heritage Fund, which shows heritage sites the GHF is working to preserve; Earthwatch Expeditions, which shows more than 100 volunteer environmental projects; and Fair Trade Certified, which shows 70 Fair Trade co-ops across Latin America.

Only organisations that are "public benefit, US-based non profit with current 501(c)(3) status" need apply.®

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