Community-Based Eco-Drones for Environmental Management and Governance
Cuts in public funding have meant that government agencies have had to scale back on the amount of environmental management and governance activities. Local community groups are, on the other hand, eager to protect and enhance their local environment as increasing impacts are felt and/or predicted, from climate change to biodiversity loss. Eco-drones have the potential to significantly reduce environmental monitoring costs, while increasing the level of community participation in environmental management and governance. Our objective is to test this approach at a local level by empowering communities, in collaboration with local government agencies, to collect and analyse eco-drone captured imagery themselves.
The short-term impact will include immediate enhancement in local community capabilities for environmental monitoring. The medium-term impact is the establishment of a viable social enterprise for supporting the deployment of eco-drones in environmental monitoring and management, creating local employment, strengthening social capital amongst participating stakeholders, and protecting the local environment. The long-term impact is the popularisation of an innovative socially, economically and environmentally sustainable digital enterprise based on the deployment of eco-drones within a rapidly expanding industry.