The Global Challenge

Accelerating climate change is an ever-present and ever-increasing threat to our natural resources. In Brazil, for example, there were roughly 10 million hectares of commercial plantation forests in 2016. During that same year, more than 1.5 million of those planted hectares were affected by drought, some of the worst such conditions in years. Today, 60% of planted Eucalyptus is currently planted in drought-prone areas, which will lead to the inevitable increase in the role that water stress will play in lumber and pulp and paper yields in the coming years.

Based on research PlanetWatchers has conducted with 4Tree, a Brazilian forestry consulting firm, It is estimated that in 2016, there was a 15% reduction in yield for forest plantations in drought-prone areas, which led to a loss of more than $150 million.

Collaboration with Airbus Defence and Space

Here at PlanetWatchers we work with leading satellite imagery providers and we are excited to be part of this amazing ecosystem and collaborate with dozens of imagery providers. In the last six months, our work with Airbus and a leading global pulp and paper firm led to our case study, Early Drought and Disease Detection in Eucalyptus Clones at Scale. The case study showed how PlanetWatchers, with our multi-source monitoring and analytics platform, selected the relevant imagery provider and data sources in order to provide last mile analytics to operations teams in the field.

The publication of this case study makes PlanetWatchers the first startup in the new space revolution ecosystem to prove an industry-specific geospatial analytics solution in the field. This  demonstrates that the PlanetWatchers solution is:

  • Based on comprehensive field work, research and validation protocols
  • Designed to expand on a global scale to solve major problems for forestry companies
  • Focused on multi-source radar and optical imagery to provide all-weather actionable insights

Conclusion

The monitoring solution based on PlanetWatchers’ analytics and Airbus’ radar and optical data has demonstrated new and enhanced abilities. These include detecting stress due to drought earlier than current technologies and methods and faster mitigation of the drought effects in the client’s workflow. By pinpointing earlier and more precisely where drought symptoms are occurring, tens of millions of dollars can be saved each year for the commercial forest industry in Brazil. We are very proud to be monitoring and protecting one of our most important assets and helping to preserve our home.

 

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