Sustainably managing water resources requires a solid information base, such as on water availability and quality. However, this data is not always readily available as water monitoring systems can be costly and easily destroyed. Data and information provided by satellite Earth Observation (EO) can bridge such information gaps, providing timely and objective monitoring of many components of the water cycle. In recognition of this, the European Space Agency (ESA) has for several years collaborated with major international development banks through a variety of small-scale projects to demonstrate the benefits that EO data information and services can bring to water resources management.
As part of ESA’s initiative “Earth Observation for Sustainable Development (EO4SD)” on water, adelphi together with other European experts from the EO sector aimed to increase the application of satellite-based information for key priority issues in water resource monitoring and planning. The project developed targeted EO-based data and applications that support water related operations of major international development banks in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
adelphi’s major role was to ensure a user-oriented perspective in the EO product development and design and to evaluate the overall effectiveness of the project. As such, the adelphi team assessed the engagement of the various stakeholders relevant to the project and reviewed whether the scope, nature and level of their engagement throughout the project were appropriate. The review also served the purpose to monitor progress within client states and to integrate EO derived information into development activities of development banks. Based on the review, adelphi outlined recommendations for improving necessary communication and capacity building measures and for addressing gaps in technical developments.