Geoinformation, monitoring and assessment Environment

Posted November 1997

FAO activities: Preparation of Projects, Training and Publications


Overview | Environmental monitoring | Agriculture | Forestry and fisheries | Projects, training, publications | Cooperation


Development projects

The Investment Centre (DDC) of FAO recommends the use of remote sensing data to supplement or update geographic information needed for preparation of projects. In addition, they are increasingly incorporating remote sensing components in projects concerned with development and management of natural resources. The Service cooperates with DDC on preparation of guidelines for the use of remote sensing in the design of investment projects, which are now ready for publication. During the last year a project was implemented in Myanmar, where satellite data were used to identify land being used for poppy production. DDC also made use of SPOT images and aerial photographs in the preparation of a natural resource management project in Bhutan. These data were used by the national counterpart officers and the project intended beneficiaries (small-scale farmers) as the starting input to help design a novel system of participatory planning, intended to lead to community management of resources during project implementation.

SPOT and Landsat imagery was used to map vegetation cover at 1:100 000 in parts of Côte d'Ivoire and Burkina Faso, in support of preparation of a project for participatory management of natural resources and fauna (GEPRENAF) to be submitted for co-financing by the World Bank, GEF and others. Wildlife numbers were estimated from a light aircraft.

A time series of 1:250 000 land cover maps has been prepared for Cambodia to quantify changes over the last 15 years. The maps provide base data for a review of agricultural development options financed by UNDP, executed by FAO, and submitted for multi-donor support.

Land Regularization Task Force

A Land Regularization Taskforce has been set up by several divisions. This interdisciplinary group coordinates activities regarding Land Information Systems (LIS). LIS depends upon remotely sensed data, primarily aerial photographs and orthophoto maps, in constructing effective multipurpose cadastre and land records systems for land registration and administration. To assist Member States in exploring the use of LIS as an important new information technology for land tenure policy implementation, the Land Regularization Taskforce organized an FAO High-Level Technical Seminar on Land Information Systems (LIS) and Agricultural Restructuring in the Baltic States, 11-16 October 1993, Riga, Latvia and an expert consultation in Rome (Nov. 1994). Two seminars are in preparation, the first with and for surveyors in the Caribbean, the second on the role of public and private sectors in land tenure activities. Missions have been conducted in Haiti, Slovenia and Croatia.

Training courses, workshops and publications

Remote sensing and GIS technology transfer through training courses for technical staff ad workshops for decision-makers continues as one of the priority activities of the Centre. The following courses and workshops were organized and/or planned in 1995/1996:

a) FAO/DSE Germany regional training course on applications of remote sensing and GIS in managing tropical forest and conserving natural resources in Latin America, one month, Zschortau, Germany, October 1995, 22 participants; November 1996 and July/August 1997.

b) FAO/EU/ESA Third sub-regional decision-makers workshop on the integration of space and conventional earth observation data for agricultural and environmental management, Warsaw, Poland, 8-12 May 1995, 25 participants.

c) FAO/DSE International Training Course "Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems as a Tool for Forest Planning in South-east Asia", in Kuala Lumbur 1993 and 1994 and in Kalimantan, Indonesia, in 1995 and 1996. 4-5 weeks, 20-24 participants from Asia each.

d) FAO/ESA/Italy sub-regional decision-makers workshop on remote sensing and GIS for agriculture, Paraguay, March 1996.

e) FAO/ESA/EU 4th sub-regional decision-makers workshop on remote sensing for sustainable development and environment, Romania, May 1996. During 1994, the Service published the following Decision Makers series in English and French:


To: FAO Remote Sensing, Geographic Information System and Agrometeorological Activities
Overview | Environmental monitoring | Agriculture | Forestry and fisheries | Projects, training, publications | Cooperation



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