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An earth observation approach towards mapping irrigated area and quantifying water use by irrigated crops in South Africa
Expanded Title:This project provides an excellent indication of the status quo of irrigated agriculture water use for the period of 1 August 2014 to 31 July 2015. The study established a methodology that can be replicated for other periods. Given that it is unlikely that the irrigated area mapping (IAM) and water use quantifications produced in this project are representative of the long-term situation, the application of the methodology to other periods is essential in aiding sound water management practices and supporting decisions about changes in allocations. The FAO recently released an Africa-wide, freely available, monthly open access of remotely sensed derived ET dataset at 250 m resolution (also generated using ETLook and thus very similar to the ET dataset used in this project) for the period 2009–2019, which will considerably reduce the cost of future implementations in SA. Coupled with the recently released and freely available Sentinel 2 imagery, the FAO ET datasets will allow for the production of seasonal (even monthly) IAMs and water use quantifications up to 2019. If the irrigated area mapping process is automated, the latency (period required for production) can be reduced to a few weeks, which will substantially increase the reliability of the water use estimations, as it will allow for in situ validation to be carried out. Based on the findings of this research, it is mainly recommended that: 1. The irrigated area mapping procedure is automated; 2. The irrigated area map is continuously (i.e. on a seasonal or monthly basis) updated; 3. Consumptive water use of irrigated crops is revised on a continuous (seasonal or monthly) basis at national scale; and 4. The water accounting (WA) framework is applied on primary catchment level, preferably in all catchments in SA.
Date Published:01/03/2018
Document Type:Research Report
Document Subjects:Agricultural Water - Commercial irrigation, Agricultural Water - Small holder irrigation
Document Format:Report
Document File Type:pdf
Research Report Type:Technical
WRC Report No:TT 745/17
ISBN No:978-1-4312-0964-4
Authors:van Niekerk A; Jarmain C; Goudriaan R; Muller SJ; Ferreira F; Münch Z; Pauw T; Stephenson G; Gibson L
Project No:K5/2401
Organizations:Stellenbosch University; eLEAF, The Netherlands; GeoTerraImage; University of Edinburgh
Document Size:19 627 KB
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