EARSC and The Green Land investigated the benefits brought by the use of satellite imagery to monitor gas pipelines at affordable costs in the Netherlands. Between €15.2m and €18.3m of economic benefit could be made each year in the whole country thanks to this application.

Indeed, subsidence can cause gas and water pipelines to break right where they enter houses. Satellite images show hot spots where ground movement is taking place. It thus allows a targeted replacement programme: the maintenance strategy has now become focused on areas of higher risk. Instead of replacing pipes and connections in a single district pipes serving individual houses or streets can be replaced. The result is better investment of resources by the pipeline operators and less risk to consumers from gas leaks or disruption from major water leaks.

This report is the last of a series of three cases in the frame of the study “Assessing the detailed economic benefits derived from Copernicus Earth Observation (EO) data within selected value chains”, undertaken by EARSC under an assignment from the European Space Agency (ESA).

A video illustrating the study is also available at this LINK.