Upstream Tech and Salo Sciences Announce Partnership

By Allegra Wrocklage on July 13, 2021

Partnership enables Lens users to view forest and wildfire risk data on areas of interest

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Upstream Tech, a mission-driven environmental technology company, has announced a partnership with Salo Sciences, a startup focused on ecosystem mapping for natural climate solutions. This partnership will enable Salo Sciences’ AI-derived forest data layers to be displayed in Lens to provide new insights into factors such as wildfire risk, canopy coverage, canopy height, and more. This information, updated annually, will empower Lens users to identify patterns and risks to inform management activities.

Upstream Tech’s Lens is a web-based application that combines best-available satellite and aerial data with an efficient monitoring workflow. Lens makes it easy to monitor a broad range of properties, no matter how large or remote. Land trusts, project developers, and conservation organizations use Lens to monitor and gain insights on millions of acres. 

Salo Sciences strives to accelerate the pace and scale of investments in natural climate solutions by using technology to identify conservation opportunities, monitor ecosystem health, and predict environmental change. In 2020 they launched the California Forest Observatory. This data-driven forest monitoring system maps three-dimensional forest attributes and the drivers of wildfire hazard across the state—including forest fuels structure, weather, topography, and infrastructure—from space. The platform’s regularly-updated, tree-level data is designed to be used by researchers, landowners, and policymakers.

Visualized in the California Forest Observatory, the grey box denotes a fire hotspot around Frenchman Lake in northern California. Active wildfire hotspots are identified using data from satellites that measure thermal anomalies twice daily. It is overlaid by the canopy base height layer (the distance between the ground and the lowest branches in the canopy), which can help predict whether a surface fire transitions to a canopy fire.

“Our goal is to make Lens a convenient and accessible platform that connects users to the analytical data they need to gain deeper insights into their conservation properties,” said Marshall Moutenot, co-founder and Managing Director of Upstream Tech. “Our partnership with Salo Sciences is a great example of the cutting-edge ecological data we can display Lens and we are excited for the Lens community to have access to it.”

“Making our California Forest Observatory data available via Lens to land managers and conservancies is key to Salo Sciences’ goal of empowering the implementation of nature-based climate solutions and furthering forest-focused conservation efforts,” said Dave Marvin, Ph.D., co-founder and CEO of Salo Sciences, Inc. “Lens does a fantastic job of making this robust, detailed data easy to draw actionable insights from.”

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The left satellite image shows a river in Northern California. The right shows the same region overlaid with Salo Sciences’ canopy height data. Canopy height is an indicator of above ground biomass and the amount of foliage that may be consumed in a crown fire.

Through the partnership, Lens users can gain access to data from the California Forest Observatory as layers in Lens. While currently only available for California, Salo Sciences is working to expand its coverage to other states, including Oregon and Washington in the coming months. Please reach out to lens@upstream.tech if you are interested in seeing these layers for your properties in Lens. 

Upstream Tech is a US-based public benefit corporation with the mission to empower better decision-making and natural resource management through technology. The company creates decision-support technologies for environmental conservation and a 100% renewable grid. Lens enables efficient monitoring of environmental projects and conservation properties. HydroForecast is an end-to-end modeling and decision support service that combines physical theory with AI and satellite imagery to provide accurate and reliable hydrological forecasts anywhere on Earth. To learn more about Upstream Tech, visit upstream.tech or follow them on Twitter at @upstream_tech.

Salo Sciences is a conservation-focused technology company using high-resolution satellite imagery and artificial intelligence to quantify the state of the environment and how it is changing. Founded as a mission-driven company to map forest carbon to guide investments in climate change mitigation, their first product, the California Forest Observatory, maps and quantifies the composition and structure of the state’s forest and provides insights on the drivers of wildfire.