Land & Water

Land Resources Planning Toolbox

This category of tools gives prominence to biophysical attributes (climate, soil, terrain, water, etc.) and their interactions in the land evaluation process. The output, in most cases, guides the users to suitable options for land use alternatives, based mainly on biophysical attributes. Land suitability and similarity analysis are typical examples. Documents describing principles, approaches and guidelines for land evaluation are included, as well as different tools for classifying soils based on the suitability for a specific use, capability or potential, fertility constraints and management and linkages to yield, productivity, physical and chemical properties. Sophisticated or simplified modelling of crop growth and yield predictions, also fall into this category.

The tools in this category use as inputs information on both biophysical characteristics  and social and economic conditions and generally incorporate principles, approaches and methods of participatory land use planning, with the overall objective of reaching mutually beneficial outcomes for all stakeholders.

The tools in this category give prominence to the characterization of social and economic settings required for land use planning and includes approaches and methods of participatory decision-making. Biophysical conditions may be considered in these tools, but not in depth.

This category includes databases that can facilitate land evaluation and land use planning by providing information that may serve as inputs for the process. These databases provide maps and data on soil and terrain characteristics, land degradation, land cover, land use, climatic data including future projections, crops and yields, food, agriculture, water resources, adaptability/suitability of identified plant species for a given environment, and socio-economic data and statistics on poverty, population, tenure and gender.

This category of tools do not produce results that have direct use for land evaluation and land use planning, but has a supporting role by providing various types of data  that can be used in land evaluation studies and as input data sets for land use planning.

Number of records: 34
New_LocClim is a software program and database that provides estimates of average climatic conditions at locations for which no observations are available. Besides providing climatic characteristics at individual points, the software offers the possibility of producing climate maps from user provided station data, or where such stations are not...
Type: Data
Scale: National, Sub-national/Province/District, Watershed/Basin/Landscape
Thematic areas: Climate
User Category: Technical specialist, Scientific advisor, Stakeholder
The LCC is one of a number of interpretive groupings made primarily for agricultural purposes. The principles of LCC are the following: (1) areas of land are put into classes ranging from best (Class I) to worst (Class VIII), (2) land allocated to a particular capability class has the potential...
Type: Data,Documentation/Manuals
Scale: Sub-national/Province/District, Locality/Farm/Site, Watershed/Basin/Landscape
Thematic areas: Land use/cover
User Category: Technical specialist, Stakeholder
EX-ACT is a tool developed by FAO which aims to provide ex-ante estimations of the impact of agriculture and forestry development projects, programs and policies on the carbon (C-) balance in terms of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and Carbon (C) sequestration. The C-balance is defined as the net balance from...
Type: Software
Scale: Sub-national/Province/District, Watershed/Basin/Landscape
Thematic areas: Climate
User Category: Technical specialist, Scientific advisor
ETo Calc is a software tool developed by the Land and Water Division of FAO under the MS-DOS operating system. Its main function is to calculate reference evapotranspiration (ETo) according to FAO standards. The software is meant as a practical tool to help agro-meteorologists, agronomists, and irrigation engineers to carry...
Type: Software
Scale: Locality/Farm/Site
Thematic areas: Climate
User Category: Technical specialist
The DSSAT software package comprises crop simulation models for over 42 crops. The DSSAT suite consists of : 1) data base management system for soil, weather, genetic coefficients, and management inputs, 2) crop simulation models, 3) series of utility programs, 4) series of weather generation programs, 5) strategy evaluation program...
Type: Software
Scale: Locality/Farm/Site
Thematic areas: Agriculture - productivity, Crops - productivity
User Category: Modeller
The FAO Digital Soil Map of the World is the digitized version of the FAO-UNESCO Soil Map of the World produced in paper version at scale 1:5 million. It shows 4931 mapping units consisting of soil associations, which are mixtures of different soil types, classified according to the
Type: Data
Scale: Global, Regional, National
Thematic areas: Soils - distribution and properties
User Category: Technical specialist
CROPWAT (currently in version 8) is a Windows computer program for the calculation of crop water requirements and irrigation requirements based on soil, climate and crop data. In addition, the program allows the development of irrigation schedules for different management conditions and the calculation of scheme water supply for varying...
Type: Software
Scale: Locality/Farm/Site
Thematic areas: Water - productivity
User Category: Technical specialist, Stakeholder
Crop Evapotranspiration (Crop-ET0) presents an updated procedure for calculating reference and crop evapotranspiration from meteorological data and crop coefficients. It offers a revision and expansion of the procedure first presented in 1977 in FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 24 ‘Crop Water Requirements’. The revised procedure allows estimation of...
Type: Documentation/Manuals
Scale: Locality/Farm/Site
Thematic areas: Crops - productivity
User Category: Technical specialist, Modeller
Cool Farm is a calculator tool to make a greenhouse gas emission/ carbon footprint assessment of a farm on the basis of harvested yield and marketable yield product weights, the growing area, fertilizer applications (type and rate), number of pesticide applications, energy use (electricity and fuel use), and, if applicable,...
Type: Crowdsourcing,Model
Scale: Locality/Farm/Site
Thematic areas: Agriculture - productivity
User Category: Stakeholder
Collect Earth is a free and open source application for land monitoring developed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) with the support of Google Earth Outreach. Supported by Google cloud and desktop technologies, it facilitates access to multiple freely available repositories...
Type: Data,Documentation/Manuals,Educational materials,Framework/Guidelines,Maps/GIS,Software
Scale: Global, Regional, National, Sub-national/Province/District, Watershed/Basin/Landscape
Thematic areas: Agriculture - productivity, Climate, Crops - distribution, Farming systems, Forestry - statistics, Land degradation, Land evaluation, Land use/cover, Remote sensing
User Category: Technical specialist, Scientific advisor, Modeller, Facilitator, Stakeholder
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