Boosting agricultural insurance based on Earth Observation data and blockchain technology

BEACON advances the inclusion of EO satellites within the AgI processes and adopts a smart contract and blockchain technology which will low the operational and administrative costs by transforming traditional processes to automated ones.

Agricultural Insurance (AgI) is the most weather-dependent sector among insurance services. The premiums’ calculations and the development of new products are highly depending on the continuously changing climate and the high variability of extreme weather events, for which such historic records are absent or not sufficiently accurate. In addition, the damage assessment and the handling of claims is rather costly including high operational and administrative costs since the verification of a claim requires on-the-spot inspections. Most of the times, the results of such inspections are controversial, since the final estimations are performed by inspectors who by human nature are less objective.

BEACON research project develops a commercial toolbox of services that couples cutting edge Earth Observation (EO) technology with weather intelligence and blockchain technology, providing to the AgI companies with a robust and cost-efficient set of services allowing them to alleviate the effect of weather uncertainty when estimating risk of AgI products. Moreover, to reduce the number of on-site visits for claim verification, as well as reduce administrative costs for monitoring of insured indexes and contract handling and design more accurate and personalized contracts.

During the last months, the BEACON toolbox was integrated with the blockchain, and a fully integrated and fine-tuned version was delivered to the end-users for the pilot implementation. This first operational integrated BEACON toolbox was tested and validated, in three different cases in Serbia, Spain and Greece. Each of these cases followed the guidelines defined in the pilot deployment plan to ensure the execution of a successful pilot phase and the collection of valuable feedback.

The uniqueness of BEACON is its holistic approach, integrating several technological and methodological innovation to every step, delivering a novel versatile tool to be used by all AgI providers. By leveraging EO data BEACON goes beyond the current state-of-the-art in using EO data for crop and weather monitoring, in risk and exposure assessment, in performing claim and handling processes more efficiently, in fraud detection, in indices development, in EO services development, etc. while transforming traditional AgI to innovative EO enabled AgI services and processes.