Cape Verde Innovation Centre for Green and Blue Growth (CAVIC)
Western Sub-Saharan Africa
CAVIC - Cape Verde Innovation Centre for Green and Blue Growth
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The Cape Verde Innovation Centre for Green and Blue Growth – CAVIC aims to foster the sustainable growth of Sub-Saharan Western Africa together with innovation activities for blue and green growth in the Mid Atlantic.
CAVIC will be focused on the use of digital advanced information and Earth Observation systems for four main areas of interest:
- sustainable urban growth, promoting Sustainable and Healthy Territories in the expanding urban contexts of Sub-Saharan Western Africa through research and innovative social practices;
- the blue economy, including the monitoring and protection of coastal areas, maritime surveillance, and monitoring of maritime traffic, as well as the monitoring of the biodiversity of the ocean;
- the green bioeconomy, including the development of an open access library of natural products to contribute to the valorisation of biological assets, while fostering a low carbon bioeconomy and innovation in land use to develop sustainable agrobusinesses; and
- sustainable energy, promoting the adoption of renewable energies and their integration in the electricity networks through smart energy grids.
To achieve these goals, CAVIC will consider and include the development of innovation services and capacity building initiatives, while complying with European cybersecurity standards to become part of the cybersecurity preparedness facility of Cabo Verde.
The Centre will be focused in addressing the conditions towards the sustainable economic, social and environmental development of West Africa, which have been discussed in recent years by ECOWAS and resulted in the establishment of ECREEE has a specialized agency with headquarters in Cabo Verde to help improving access to modern, reliable and affordable energy services, energy security and reduction of negative environmental externalities of the energy system.
Emphasis will be on the following actions in the short term:
- Deployment of dedicated equipment in existing Data Centre for Earth Observation and related scientific, technological and innovation activities for blue and green growth, pooling existing digital resources in Cabo Verde and in Western Sub-Saharan Africa, in close cooperation with main public and private regional actors in the area of green economy. The Data Centre will also be tailored to address local needs and ensure highest possible energy efficiency of operations;
- An effective international network and international connectivity pathway, including the EurAfrica Gateway), through the engagement of the Atlantic International Research Centre, AIR Centre, and its main role as coordinator of an European funded CSA under the mission “EU Mission Restore our Ocean and Waters by 2030” (with EC´s Horizon Europe funding for 2023-2027). CAVIC will become fully integrated in the AIR Centre network;
- Fostering a Digital connectivity infrastructure, including international connectivity (the EurAfrica Gateway), the Regional Fiber backbones and Satellite connectivity, together with Secure EurAfrica Gateway Cable; CAVIC will comply with European cybersecurity standards and the 5G Toolbox, aiming to become part of the cybersecurity preparedness facility of Cabo Verde;
- Strengthening regional cohesion and networks in Western Sub-Saharan Africa in the area of urban expansion, environmental monitoring, natural resources management and support to fisheries, through remote sensing services using geospatial technologies to provide decision support and planning tools for sustainable social and economic development. This will include a close articulation with existing services in Western Africa, including in Senegal, Ghana and Nigeria, as well as with inter-governmental organizations, such as the Sub-Regional Fisheries Commission (SRFC);
- Further reinforcing Cabo Verde’s ambition on becoming a Digital Hub in Sub-Saharan Western Africa and increasing digital connectivity for underserved countries, leveraging capabilities to create social impact and bring value to industry (SMEs, start-ups) and society. Through an investment opportunity in the Amilcar Cabral submarine cable, connecting Cabo Verde to the underserved countries of Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Sierra Leone and The Gambia increasing their resilience and connecting them to EllaLink. Evaluated with the ongoing feasibility study by ECOWAS to identify operating model, model for implementation and corresponding funding requirements.
CAVIC will explore the experience of the Atlantic International Research Centre – AIR Centre, including its “Earth Observation Laboratory” (in the Terceira Island of Azores) and related activities in Brazil (e.g., Rio Janeiro, Ceará) and Africa (e.g., South Africa and Nigeria), to help strengthening regional cohesion and networks in Western Sub-Saharan Africa, including a close articulation with exiting services in Western Africa, including in Senegal, Ghana and Nigeria. Major partners in Cabo include NOSI, The Institute of the Sea (IMar) through the Ocean Science Centre Mindelo (OSCM), The National Institute for Agrarian Research and Development (INIDA), INMG - National Institute of Meteorology and Geophysics, and ENAPOR - Cabo Verde Port Authority.
A joint assessment plan involving regional institutions and the European Space Agency has been organized in the final quarter of 2022 and should result in a detailed implementation plan to be launched in the first semester of 2023.