The project, called EO-li (Earth Observation based location identifier), is a web-based, global broker platform and market place. It has 4 components namely the (i) identification of a location to be restored, the (ii) selection of an area and the actors doing the restoration, the (iii) monitoring and reporting on the progress of the project using earth observation and geospatial data and (iiii) a learning platform providing guidance and capacity strengthening.
The project has just terminated the conceptual phase funded in a venture round by the European Space Agency (ESA) and is looking for funding to implement this innovative, comprehensive restoration platform.Specifically, we are looking for an investment of 1,975,000 USD for which a web-based platform will be developed that has a cloud based processing engine in the background that allows the automatic ingestion and processing of high resolution earth observation and big geospatial data. All stakeholders in landscape restoration can easily extract – at the push of a button – the information contained in this data regarding the project they invested in. Importantly, no background in geodata processing is required. Transparency is achieved through project transactions being recorded in a specially adapted blockchain. The funds will also be used to train stakeholders on all continents affected by land degradation.
After year 1, a working prototype will be on the market with a business model implemented. Revenue is projected to come from a diversity of investors who are interested in land restoration, food security and carbon sequestration. The profitability is projected to rise from 5% in the first year to 25% by year 5 and 45% after 10 years, since we are looking at a high level of automation and a global market.
The platform will objectify the land restoration process and facilitate monitoring and reporting on project progress which will help to reach the targets of the various SDGs. By combining the four components (i) identify, (ii) select, (iii) monitor and (iiii) learn the EO-li platform follows a more holistic approach than other platforms that concentrate on individual aspects of the above components.
The EO-li platform will exclusively be based on Free and Open Source Software and will come with free remote sensing data from the European Copernicus program and other free data sources. Since all code and all data is freely accessible, all stakeholders are invited to participate and create a sustainable land restoration case for their respective communities. By providing micro-credits to smallholder farmers an organization interested in land restoration and food security invests in the establishment of a sustainable livelihood for a smallholder farmer. Since the credit will be paid back over time the investor is highly motivated and can facilitate further investments in land restoration in the future.