The Coastal Ecosystem Mapping and Media Utility project applied advanced and pioneering unmanned aerial vehicle technology with companion software and mobile app to explore the viability of an innovative communications tool. It further evaluated the feasibility of mapping and assessing the geographic extent of coastal blue carbon ecosystems in a low cost and quantitative way.

The project was implemented by AGEDI with GRID-Arendal as partner and was supported by Sharjah EPAA, Dubai Municipality and GEF Blue Forests.

Drone 3D Mapping of Mangroves from AGEDI on Vimeo.

The project examined the tools and methodologies implemented to assist the assessment of blue carbon ecosystems through the following activities:

  • Assessing the viability of using volume calculations derived from unmanned aerial vehicle footage to calculate biomass and Blue Carbon storage capacity.
  • Assessing the viability of using video and photo footage from unmanned aerial as communications and outreach tools to promote international blue carbon efforts.
  • The testing of the unmanned aerial vehicle mapping utility and assessing test sites, relevant to the ground-truthing of carbon and ecosystem assessments.
  • Developing a methodology for replication in other test sites round the world.
  • Promoting the outcomes and potential of the project at an international event to raise awareness of international Blue Carbon efforts and the feasibility of using lower cost technology in the collection of viable defendable scientific data.
  • Creating multiple communication and outreach tools to promote the outputs of this project and the organisations associated with it.

The Coastal Ecosystem Mapping and Media Utility project contributes to enable international exposure of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Blue Carbon efforts and linkages to other International Blue Carbon efforts and projects such as the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Blue Forests Project. The project seeks to potentially add a component to international Blue Carbon projects that is currently not included; an ecosystem mapping and media function that can contribute to the carbon assessment and communications activities of multiple Blue Carbon activities.

Technical Report Coastal Blue Carbon Mapping and Media Viability (2059 downloads )