The UN Sustainable Development Goal 2 (“zero hunger”) aims to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture. The Government of Nepal (GoN) recognizes the prevailing situation of food insecurity across the country and attaches high importance to ensuring food security for all. However, there is a need to build upon significant capacity in food security planning, monitoring and evaluation within the GoN to enable it to provide reliable and timely information to support planning and policy decision making processes.
Monitoring and estimating crop acreage at a national scale is required to determine the national or sub-national food demand and supply balance, and its implications for food production and food security. Whether during times of world food shortages, or during periods of surplus, monitoring and estimating crop acreage requires long-term efforts. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) also include doubling productivity and incomes of smallholders as key targets. Estimates and forecasts of crop area and yield are of critical importance to policy makers for the planning of agricultural production and monitoring of food supply. The operational use of open-source satellite-based and model information to monitor climate and crops at daily and seasonal levels for integrated analysis of crop performance provides a cost-effective means to support decision making processes.
To adopt new technologies in food security assessments, the Statistics Unit of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development (MoALD) and ICIMOD’s SERVIR Hindu Kush Himalaya (SERVIR-HKH) Initiative are codeveloping an operational service for crop area and yield estimation using remote sensing and machine learning.
Capacity building of agriculture professionals in the use of new technologies is a priority area to keep research aligned with recent technological developments. Earth Observation (EO) technologies have tremendous potential to support the implementation of long-term and large-scale research and development programmes and for resolving the data and information gaps in the agriculture sector – status and changes in land use, agricultural production, and resilience for food security, among many other aspects.
In this context, MoALD, in collaboration with ICIMOD and the World Food Programme (WFP), is organizing a three-day training workshop on satellite remote sensing supported crop mapping and associated field data collection processes on 02–04 March 2021 in Chitwan, Nepal.
This workshop aims to train professionals from relevant institutions on satellite data analysis for agriculture monitoring and food security assessment and associated field-based observations. This training will also provide operational skills to field level professionals to engage in crop monitoring and yield estimation processes.
The training is expected to strengthen co-development and adoption of methodologies for crop monitoring being jointly developed by MoALD and ICIMOD.
A total of fifteen nominated agriculture officers and extension staff from Chitwan, Nawalparasi, Bara and Rupandehi districts in Nepal are expected to participate in this training.
Resource persons and facilitators
MoALD: Shib N. Shah, Ram K. Regmi, and Salik Paudel
ICIMOD: Faisal M Qamer, Birendra Bajracharya, Sravan Shrestha,Kiran Shakya, Rajesh Shrestha
WFP: Mann K. Chhetri
02–04 March 2021
- Day 1 – Tuesday, 02 March 2021
Session 1: Opening session
Overview and objectives of the training
Overview of the SERVIR Hindu Kush Himalaya Initiative
Overview of ICIMOD and MoALD’s collaboration
Ram K. Regmi, MoALD
Faisal M. Qamer, ICIMOD
Birendra Bajracharya, ICIMOD
Shib N. Shah, MoALD
Joint Secretary, MoALD (TBD)
Coffee/ tea break
Session 2: Overview of Earth observation applications
Application of satellite remote sensing in the agriculture sector
Principles of optical and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) remote sensing
Faisal Qamer and Sravan Shrestha, ICIMOD
Session 3: Learnings from rice area estimation 2020
Field data collection in Covid-19 situation: Satellite remote sensing processing approach applied
Review of the crop area estimate results for Chitwan and neighbouring districts
Shib N. Shah/Salik Paudel, MoALD
Sravan Shrestha, ICIMOD
Ram K. Regmi, MoALD /Faisal Qamer, ICIMOD
Session 4: GIS in food security assessment
Use of GIS for food security assessments
Drought Watch/CropScape Nepal
Mann K. Chhetri, World Food Programme
Shib N. Shah, MoALD/
Faisal Qamer, ICIMOD
Session 5: Exploring online system for drought and food security assessment
- Day 2 – Wednesday, 03 March 2021
- Day 3 – Thursday, 04 March 2021