As part of the IWAREMA (Integrated Water Resource management for Zambia) project, funded through ESA’s Data User Element, data from ESA’s multispectral MERIS sensor aboard Envisat was used to create maps depicting existing water resources, suitable dam locations and land cover. The project is carried out by the Belgium Company GIM (Geographic Information Management) in partnership with the University of Zambia and the Zambian water authorities.
"The results of the IWAREMA project can be used to protect Zambia’s ecosystems particularly in the Kafue flats where wildlife, agricultural activities, fisheries and tourism compete for regulated water resources," Jack Nkhoma of Zambia’s Department of Water Affairs said.
Having access to these maps allows authorities to determine the expansion of urban areas and loss of forest and agricultural areas as well as calculate the risk of erosion, change in water availability and percentage of surface water, which will allow for early flood warnings.
The land cover change maps will help the government look at past trends in terms of deforestation, reclaimed land and new settlement areas to determine the long term affect and implement corrective measures.
Zambia has one of the highest urban populations in Sub-Saharan Africa, with about 34 percent of the total country population of nearly 11 million people living in urban areas, according to the United Nations Human Settlement Programme. The rate of urbanisation has been unprecedented and has therefore exceeded the rate of infrastructure development and service provision, such as water supply and sanitation.
"With a lot of pressure from population growth and urbanisation, the land cover maps will show how demographic variables and pressures will impact natural resources," Nkhoma said.
The project focused on the Kafue River Basin, which is a sub-basin of the Zambezi River. The Kafue Basin is of great importance to the country’s economy and is home to more than half of the country’s population.
"The IWAREMA project information is useful for our policy makers in decision making for the basin and should be extended to other basins of the Zambezi so as to improve the data situation and make comparisons between areas, as very little information is currently available," Banda Kawawa of the University of Zambia said. "The products have also shown to be cost effective in relation to other conventional methods used."
IWAREMA was one of the projects initiated under ESA’s TIGER initiative, launched in 2002 to assist African countries to overcome water-related problems and to bridge Africa's water information gap using satellite data. To date, more than 100 African water basin authorities, universities and other organisations have become involved in TIGER projects across the continent.
Mariangela D'Acunto | alfa
Upcycling of PET Bottles: New Ideas for Resource Cycles in Germany
25.06.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Betriebsfestigkeit und Systemzuverlässigkeit LBF
Dry landscapes can increase disease transmission
20.06.2018 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
19.07.2018 | Materials Sciences
19.07.2018 | Earth Sciences
19.07.2018 | Life Sciences