Lian Pin Koh (left) and Serge Wich (right) in Zurich with an early prototype of Conservation Drone.
TED Global speaker/drone ecologist Lian Pin Koh and fellow researcher Serge Wich share how drones are playing an important role in helping conservationists survey and map ecologically sensitive parts of the globe.
Global land-use changes continue to be a major driver of biodiversity loss and greenhouse gas emissions. Remote sensing technology is increasingly used to assess changes in land use, species distributions and carbon stocks. However, satellite and airborne sensors can be prohibitively costly and inaccessible for researchers, or they may not have the required spatial resolution. Recently UAVs have been used by conservation researchers and practitioners across various parts of the world. These inexpensive UAVs typically cost less than $4000 US, and have been dubbed ‘Conservation Drones’.