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Authenticating with Earth Engine services is likely to be the biggest complication for developers who are not already working with the EE API.

While the Earth Engine API documentation and forums are the official source of information on how to authenticate, this is a quick overview.


If using the pydeck-earthengine-layers package, any extra authentication steps should be handled for you automatically. You'll need only the standard authentication required by the earthengine-api library to work with Earth Engine Python objects, i.e.:

import ee

# Necessary only on the first install; opens a Google sign-in prompt

# Necessary in every Python session


The EarthEngineLayer provides an initializeEEApi helper to authenticate and initialize the JavaScript Earth Engine library. This calls or ee.setToken(), and then ee.initialize(), and returns a Promise that resolves when authentication and initialization is completed and the EE API is ready to use.

Authenticating via Login (OAuth2)

The easiest way to authenticate from a JavaScript application is to use initializeEEApi with a clientId.

Note that this requires:

  • registering a Google client id
  • requesting Earth Engine access for that client
  • adding the URLs from which the application will be served to the whitelisted origins for that client id.
  • Visitors to your website must have a Google Account that is approved for use with Earth Engine.

Authenticating via Access Token

If you have an existing OAuth2 authentication workflow, you can use that to generate access tokens, which you then pass to


An access token is valid for a short period of time, usually one hour, and any requests to the EarthEngine backend will fail after that time until a new access token is provided.