This project aims at overcoming the lack of local and regional information on the knowledge of the main parameters of water and carbon cycles (as soil moisture, vegetation biomass and crop water status) by using the potentials offered by new satellite systems in both microwave and optical domain and advanced modeling.
The goal of the project is the definition of an optimized management of water resources for cultivated lands on Egyptian Delta (Northern part) and Tunisian territory. This will be achieved by analyzing the available spatial and temporal data for the areas of interests, appropriately selected for this purpose. As such, an efficient water use, equitable distribution of water resources, community participation in decisions, and sustainable system operation over time can be supported.

First of all, we aim to localize different crop and irrigation techniques for the study regions. This information is required as a basis for further investigations and assessments.
Secondly, the water efficiency for different lands, crop types and irrigation systems will be assessed. Afterwards, possible improvements in agricultural practice with respect to climate change scenarios and information on water efficiency will be determined by rating the outcome from the assessment.

Project approach and methodology can be resumed in the following points:

  • Collect satellite data (microwave & optical) on the agricultural test areas affected by water scarcity and drought
  • Develop a methodology from optical/microwave remote sensing data at high/medium spatial resolution for preliminary investigations of rural lands affected by drought
  • Perform experimental campaigns collecting ground measurements of soil and crop parameters, together with ancillary and meteorological information
  • Implement inversion algorithms (tuned to arid environment) to estimate main parameters of the hydrological cycle (soil moisture, crop cover and biomass, and water status)
  • The outputs of the inversion algorithms will be used for generating multi-temporal maps at regional and local scale for supporting decision making processes
  • A database will be setup and used for driving and updating a methodology for the sustainable use of water in agriculture
  • Feedback from end users and stakeholders will be taken into account for updating the strategy suggested for moderating the problems of water wastes and scarcity