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Supporting environmental law enforcement with Earth Observation

Monitoring the environment to support its protection is the main “raison d’etre” of the European Commission Copernicus satellite programme. At present, satellite-derived information is not used on a regular basis as primary evidence in environmental law enforcement. This is mostly due to the fact that satellite-derived information has almost exclusively been technology-led and is quite new to the legal sector. Consequently, there is limited awareness among the legal sector about the range of applicable satellite-derived information solutions, their access and affordability for evidence gathering on environmental violations.

EnviroLENS aims

enviroLENS bridges the gap for the utilization of the European Satellite capacities provided by Copernicus for environmental law enforcement and related cross-cutting sectors. The project is responding to the demands of the jurisdictional sector for ready-to-access evidence and scenario information on environmental situations.

The main aim of the project is to deliver Earth observation-based services providing evidences on environmental incidences and legal violations in order to support the evidence data gathering process and to foster data-driven decision-making.

enviroLENS innovation

enviroLENS seeks to deliver three types of innovations:

TECHNOLOGICAL INNOVATIONS: Earth Observation and  semantic data mining technologies are merged to provide a joint environmental legislation discovery system.


CONCEPTUAL INNOVATIONS: The eLENS Portal will deliver a cross-domain solution, embracing Earth Observation-based services and transforming them by enrichment with new legal added value


COMMERCIAL INNOVATIONS: The enviroLENS open value chain strategy is allowing anybody to contribute and receive a multitude of benefits in return.

EnviroLENS partners

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Getting things done

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Environment and Earth observation today

Most of times potential uses of Earth observation (EO) are narrowed down to three, such as regulation and enforcement of specific laws, monitoring of compliance with environmental laws in previously targeted sites, and provision of historic evidence. EO is unlikely to replace ground-based monitoring, but in the right circumstances, it can provide valuable supplementary data … Continue reading Environment and Earth observation today

Earth observation and the legal community, a missing link

The idea of using satellite images for environmental law enforcement has been around for more than 20 years. An article written on the subject in 1997 complained, already than, that even “twenty-five years after the first release of satellite data to the non-military sector, the technology remains greatly under-utilized by the legal community.” Discussing some … Continue reading Earth observation and the legal community, a missing link

Introducing enviroLENS to the European, North and Central Asian Conservation Community

Reliable, cost-effective and easy-to-use data for monitoring of environmental compliance is becoming more and more pertinent. Innovative solutions and technologies, such as Earth observation tools, can fill critical data and information gaps, especially where human and financial resources are scarce. Uniting Earth observation tools with the environmental law and legal domain provides novel and unique … Continue reading Introducing enviroLENS to the European, North and Central Asian Conservation Community

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