Observing the Earth to Enforce Environmental Law
We are honored to be part of the EnviroLENS, a Horizon 2020 innovation project funded by the European Commission, which aims to demonstrate and promote the use of Earth Observation (EO) as direct evidence for environmental law enforcement, including in a court of law and in related contractual negotiations. By using European satellite capacities, such as those provided by Copernicus, EnviroLENS aims at responding to the demands of the environmental legal sector in the context of evidence-based decision-making processes.
The EnviroLENS project aims to deliver EO-based evidence on environmental incidences and/or environmental law violations in order to facilitate the data gathering process as well as to reduce the number of field inspections by experts to confirm them. It addresses both the pro-active monitoring perspective to prevent damages to the environment, as well as the assessment of environmental violations for the enforcement of environmental law. Further, it will support environmental impact assessment procedures for advising in the context of contractual negotiations and discussions with the clients.
Coordinated by GeoVille, the project combines the competence and expertise of Sinergise, the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at Jožef Stefan Institute, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and DLA Piper to demonstrate and validate the value of using EO in the environmental law sector.
DLA Piper and IUCN's on-the-ground examples will prove the applicability, the reliability and the relevance of the EO tools in the enforcement of environmental law. These examples also serve as showcases to stimulate acceptance and standardization and to promote the power of satellite imagery data as a reliable, timely, accurate and cost-effective source of evidence to the wider environmental law and conservation community.
The main outcome of this innovation project will be a service portfolio that combines components from the corporate and legal sectors (offering evidence, show-cases and contacts for legal services based on specific location and theme) with EO-based services (alarming, monitoring and recording) to create value-added information that supports evidence-based decision making in the environmental domain.
Goals of EnviroLENS
- ASSESS current legal practices, user requirements and barriers of present environmental law enforcement procedures and illustrate the potential of EO-based evidences
- ENGAGE key representatives for the enforcement of environmental law at local, national, European and global level;
- DEVELOP an innovative, fully automated service portfolio that delivers specific evidence based on EO data, through the use of Copernicus data streams
- DEMONSTRATE the quality, confidence and added value of EO-based evidences for legal environmental law enforcement through several show
- PROMOTE the uptake of the EnviroLENS technology by establishing a business model that allows integration of the technology and incubation of new service providers, including a location based brokerage service for citizens to contact specialised corporate law firms.
The two-years long EnvioLENS project officially started on December 1, 2018.
For more information visit the official page of the project.
Copernicus is the European Union's Earth Observation Programme, looking at our planet and its environment for the ultimate benefit of all European citizens. It offers information services based on satellite Earth Observation and in situ (non-space) data such as ground based weather stations, ocean buoys and air quality monitoring networks to help us better understand our planet and sustainably manage the environment we live in.
This project has received funding from European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under the Grant Agreement 821918.