GIS and Remote Sensing Support for EIAs
Geo Smart Decisions regularly coordinates the spatial data management and analysis aspects of large infrastructure projects in the Middle East for this global environmental consultancy.
Skills and experience in GIS analysis and visualisation are applied to a number of disciplines with applications including support to experts in noise, ecology, contaminated soils and air quality. A recent project was completed employing all of these disciplines for the EIA of three proposed exploratory wells across Dubai.
This support is invaluable for the client to meet tight deadlines and present data and analysis to a very high standard. Other recent projects include support for the Etihad Rail Construction project. GIS support was provided to map the results of a complete breeding bird survey along this route focussing on Little Owl and Barn Owl. Work on recent confidential projects include support on a Spiny-tail Lizard Relocation project in Saudi Arabia, a Vulnerable IUCN Red List and CITES Appendix II species.
This work required GIS support from Geo Smart Decision to present the results of this well regarded conservation project in the Middle East.
GIS Support for Solar Farm Development in England
We provide GIS support to a large planning consultancy based in London who do not have in-house GIS expertise. We advise on the purchase of spatial data and the appropriate analysis and visualisation required on a project by project basis.
Support was provided for a number of proposed solar farm developments in England including an Alternative Site Assessment project, which required GIS constraints analysis. This kind of technical support is critical in order to apply standard methods of analysis and assessment that are appropriate for planning applications in this area of the renewables sector.
Habitat and Land Cover Mapping, Middle East
Geo Smart Decisions has a wealth of expertise and experience managing large GIS and remote sensing projects and working with consultants from many different specialist areas. In particular, Geo Smart Decision has worked on a number of habitat classification projects for an ecological consultancy based in Dubai. Projects have ranged from proposed railway routes, redevelopment sites for airports and ports, extensions to major transportation routes amongst many others and located all over the Middle East including projects in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iraq and UAE. This work has contributed to identifying sensitive habitats and associated mitigation design as well as to general project support and survey work.
Marine Habitat Mapping, Middle East
This environmental consultancy based in UAE needed to map marine habitats in and around the area of a proposed pier extension in Dubai. Geo Smart Decisions procured and analysed very high resolution satellite imagery (WorldView-2) and subsequently mapped the extents of different marine habitats in consultation with in situ field survey data provided by the client. Applying a number of different remote sensing analyses a number of figures were produced to assist in discussion with the marine ecologist. This work was critical for informing the understanding of the varying extents of sub-surface habitat patterns which was critical information, informing the environmental statement required for this proposed development.
Satellite Imagery Analysis, Tanzania
Land cover mapping along the coast in Tanzania was required to identify constraints and inform site suitability assessments for the construction of a gas processing plant. Geo Smart Decisions advised on and procured appropriate satellite imagery for this task. Using professional remote sensing software, the spectral patterns of the various land cover types were assessed in consultation with ecologists and land use specialists; semi-automated techniques were applied to the imagery along with visual interpretation of very high resolution imagery to produce final classification outputs. GIS was used to produce the maps, GIS files and geodatabases. These outputs contributed to the information required by the client to make objective comparisons between potential sites for development and were a significant step in driving that development forward.
Crematorium Site Suitability
This was a site suitability project for a crematorium in Flintshire, Wales. The client was new to the use of GIS for this purpose and Geo Smart Decisions advised on and managed the procurement of all relevant data and the method involved.
Constraints maps were created in the early stages and geoprocessing was applied to a number of datasets to create the specific constraints required for the project. This included information on slope, distance to residential buildings and proximity to designated sites.
We provided a number of maps at various scales identifying specific plots suitable for development. The client was able to use this information in formal reports presented in the planning system.
Constraints Modelling and Site Suitability Analyses
This developer was looking to streamline their site acquisition procedures. Key to this was understanding the potential for large areas of land to meet the constraints requirements of wind development. GIS analysis involved very small scale, raster based constraints processing to identify potential sites across both England and Scotland.
A large number of constraints were identified, sourced/created and scored appropriately and in consultation with the client. Map files were created and provided as deliverables, raster datasets showing areas scoring high or low in terms of suitability for development, along with a final geodatabase and report were delivered.
The deliverables were well received and enabled the client to focus resources on sites with the greatest potential for development saving on valuable time and energy.