Creating liveable, resilient cities is one of greatest challenges facing municipalities across the world. WEO provide satellite-based analytics for your city to help create a step-change in the rollout of green infrastructure.
Harness the power of green infrastucture to improve food security, cool our neighbourhoods and create great places to live.
Satellite-based imagery is used to identify where areas are being sealed to minimise flood risk, track the growth in green roofs to plan incentive programs, understand the impact of vegetation to reduce land surface temperature and more.
Use Case: Green Roof Monitoring
Green roofs are a cornerstone of efforts to increase biodiversity, reduce extreme heat risk and reduce runoff in our cities.
WEO is working with a major city in Belgium to identify how many green roofs have been installed over the last 10 years to measure the effectiveness of incentive programs and legislative requirements on encouraging green roofs. This helps them determine the best policy instruments going forward.
Another client, an agency in Luxembourg wished to understand the potential for green roofs in Luxembourg City to reduce runoff. By quantify the potential role of green roofs, they will be able to design policy instruments and justify funding to increase the presence of green roofs.
Use Case: Land Surface Temperature Monitoring
Extreme heat is one of the greatest risks facing our cities. In the 2003 heatwaves alone, 70,000 excess deaths were reported, with residents of urban buildings surrounded by hot heat-retaining surfaces like concrete facing a significantly increased risk compared to rural residents.
The primary risk of urban heat is at night, with city blocks up to 10 degrees warmer than adjacent rural areas at night, because roads, pavements and buildings absorb heat and stay warm through the night.
WEO maps land temperatures at a resolution of 10m for a number of cities in Luxembourg so they can pinpoint dangers areas and prioritise interventions, such as planting trees or vegetation which cool the air at night.
Use Case: Surface Sealing Tracking
Surface sealing is the process whereby natural surfaces such as grassland, forests or farmland is sealed either by roads, buildings or pavements as part of urban expansion.
Given natural surfaces are able to absorb water, surface sealing results in increased flood volume and faster runoff time, increasing the chance of flash flooding or flooding to downstream areas. The recent 2021 summer floods in Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands brought this risk to front-of-mind.
To better understand the risk, our municipality and government agency clients are interested in understanding where new surface sealing is occuring in near real-time. Often their previous data was at-best produced every 5 years. WEO produce sealed surface maps at 10m resolution, giving cities a clear picture of where construction is occuring and even a tool to identify how different developments are impacting the region in a more or less severe way.
How it works
Our resilient cities products utilise a combination of Sentinel-1 radar, Sentinel-2 optical/infrared and Sentinel-3 thermal data. These datasets are updated every 1 to 5 days. This regular revisit ensures that there is a cloud-free satellite image available to provide data updates every season.
The only disadvantage of Sentinel products are that some products are a lower resolution. That's why WEO utilise deep learning techniques trained on centimeter resolution lidar, orthophotography and higher resolution satellite data to 'zoom in' to a higher resolution.
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