Bribie tech maps bushfire risks

Published 1:00pm 9 September 2022

Bribie tech maps bushfire risks
Words by Jodie Powell

Environmental analytics compiled by Bribie Island-based Ozius Biome have the potential to revolutionise how we respond to disasters and changes in the landscape.

Environmental intelligence company Ozius launched a platform last week that creates high-speed data about vegetation, allowing organisations to better prepare for bushfires or floods and detect landscape changes.

Ozius Biome uses cloud technology to deliver advanced environmental analytics 450 times faster than its previous system by using Amazon Web Services (AWS).

In a fast-changing environment, finding solutions and identifying risks is a race against time.

The platform takes data from satellites and light-detection-and-ranging technologies, combining it with artificial intelligence, to generate data on vegetation.

When the data is combined, it allows organisations across sectors such as government, energy, and Defence to identify opportunities from carbon-trading, monitoring deforestation, and environmental restoration to preparing for bushfires or floods.

Ozius founder, director and chief science officer Alisa Starkey says Biome gives unprecedented access to environmental intelligence, from canopy cover to generating 3D vegetation structures, enabling customers to investigate landscapes and unlock more sustainable opportunities.

She says the speed delivered by using AWS’ Amazon Aurora to boost database performance is a game-changer.

“The environment around us is changing at lightspeed – anything less than a game-changing solution doesn’t cut it any more,” Alisa says.

Why this tech matters

Bribie tech maps bushfire risks

Before it switched to AWS, Ozius used an on-premises system, which took up to five months to process more than 170 million environmental data points and 24 months of satellite imagery data across Australia.

“Our environmental intelligence is critical as governments set new environmental standards and policies, and communities and investors demand a shift towards decarbonisation,” Alisa says.

“It’s a race against time to lower our carbon emissions and every second we can save can prove critical for our business and customers.

“By collaborating with AWS, Ozius is powering and pioneering new technology that alleviates some of Australia’s most pressing challenges.”

Ozius has also boosted the resolution of its environmental-intelligence products, delivering vegetation images at 100 times higher resolution.

Without Biome, organisations would need to fly a plane and use photomapping or go into the field and measure manually to collect data of similar quality.

How it is used

RedEye, which provides asset data management for critical infrastructure owners and operators, uses Biome to identify degraded landscapes.

Fire technology technical director Andrew Sturgess says Biome helps identify thick undergrowth that can lead to intensified wildfires.

“We assess risk and how a range of management practises, including cultural burning or traditional owners land management can reduce risk, cost and restore country,” Andrew says.

Amazon Web Services Country Director, Australia and New Zealand, Public Sector Iain Rouse says innovative solutions are needed to address environmental challenges.

“By delivering high-fidelity data on vegetation structure, canopy connectivity and foliage density, Biome has the potential to revolutionise how we respond to disasters and changes in the landscape,” Iain says.

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