GeoSmart wins Geovation Challenge for Sustainable Catchments

We are delighted to announce that GeoSmart has won this year’s Ordnance Survey Geovation Challenge.

geovation certificateThe theme this year was ‘Water’, held last weekend at the Ordnance Survey HQ in Southampton. Our Chairman Mark Fermor and Consultant Steve Buss, competed alongside 9 other teams to identify and create innovative solutions to real world water challenges and sustainable solutions in the UK.

Taking our cue from the extreme flooding in Cumbria and Yorkshire last winter, we explored how we could model the effect of different mitigation measures in upland river catchments. There has been much debate about the ‘re-greening’ of river tributaries through re-forestation and natural sustainable drainage, and barriers such as bunds or fallen trees and vegetation to slow down run off rates.

Our winning proposition is for a Sustainable Catchments web platform that supports all stakeholders involved in managing catchment flows. It would initially map opportunities for flood mitigation measures and rank their benefit and cost effectiveness for vulnerable communities and assets. This would then examine the wider catchment benefits including water resources, water quality, habitat, biodiversity, amenity and fisheries.

Here’s some video footage of Steve and Mark being interviewed after collecting the challenge.

Geovation is supported by DEFRA, Environment Agency, Southern Water, United Utilities and Ordnance Survey. The guiding principle of the initiative is the formula:  innovation = problem x solution x execution.

We will be looking at the potential to develop these ideas further within GeoSmart’s ongoing research and development programme.

More information on the Geovation Challenge.