Namibia: Big Brother watching rangeland conditions | Land Portal
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By: New Era Staff Reporter
Date: February 16th 2016
Source: New Era

Windhoek - The European Union (EU) Rangeland Monitoring Project is just one of many facets of the Namibia Rangeland Management Policy and Strategy.

The EU Monitoring Project is currently busy developing and testing a rangeland monitoring system for Namibia. The main objective is to give land users an objective measure of deteriorating conditions, hence promoting pro-active management. This component is based on satellite monitoring of Namibia’s rangelands and updates of the rangeland conditions is done very two weeks. According to the latest update of the project, the northern parts of the Kunene Region, north-western parts of the Omusati region, large parts of the Ohangwena Region, north-western parts of the Khomas Region, north-western parts of the Kavango West Region and northern parts of the Omaheke Region show increased vegetation activity over the past three months. (Green means increased vegetation activity compared to the average calculated for the last 15 years, while red means lower than average conditions).

Areas that experienced severe drought conditions during the last three months include Karas, Hardap and Zambesi regions, most of the Otjozondjupa Region, south and central Omaheke, large parts of the Erongo Region, and eastern and southern parts of the Khomas region as well as large parts of the Kavango East Region. Brown means drought conditions and blue better than normal conditions.

Dark green shading on the map indicates high vegetation activity and dark brown where no vegetation activity occurred. Brown on the map indicates drought conditions and blue better than normal conditions.

The Vegetation Condition Index (VCI) calculated for the previous three months provides an overview of the extent and severity of the drought over this three-month period. It is clear that large parts of the Namibia experienced severe drought conditions during this three month period.

The NDVI deviation and Vegetation Condition Index maps provide an objective way to monitor the general state of the vegetation by comparing the current situation with long-term (2001 to current) information. Since the maps are updated every two weeks, one can track how conditions change over the growing season for an area of interest.


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Photo source: Andrew Ashton via Flickr/Creative Commons (CC By-NC-ND 2.0). Photo: © Andrew Ashton

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