At the outset of the EASOS project, the Satellite Applications Catapult, with a consortium of companies from both the UK and Malaysia, set out to provide an informed and coordinated decision-making capability to the Malaysian Government. The information that EASOS would provide covered three focus areas:
- the reduction of degradation to the mangrove coastline by reducing marine pollution in the Malacca Straits,
- the reduction of the impact of illegal logging,
- and the reduction of the economic and social cost of flood events.
As the project closes, EASOS has developed a highly automated, replicable system that works across these three domains and can be scaled across multiple countries. The Marine Watch, Forest Watch and Flood Watch domains are tested, live and being used to support government decision making in these three vital areas.
It has already enjoyed success in many real-life situations including earlier this year, when EASOS Marine Watch automatically detected two separate oil slicks off the coast of Malaysia’s Johor district. The detections helped to speed up the clean-up response of the marine authorities, and whilst work continues to estimate the likely financial and environmental benefit from just one of these averted environmental disasters, early estimates based on impact to fisheries, tourism, the marine ecosystem and clean-up along 13km of coastline could have exceeded RM 8m/£1.5m.
EASOS Flood Watch also provided support to operational management of flooding events during the 2017-18 monsoon season, and EASOS services have been delivered daily by the Satellite Applications Catapult directly to the Malaysian authorities and have aided decisions to evacuate people from their homes on four separate occasions as a result of accurate alerts generated by EASOS.
EASOS has also significantly impacted UK organisations, enabling them to develop new products and services, and is set to grow the economy further due to investments made by the Catapult in exploring increasing geographic scope outside of the initial areas of interest in Malaysia, opening up EASOS to other new potential suppliers and providing an access to new international distributors.
For more information on the ongoing work of the EASOS project, visit www.easos.org.uk