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Project detail

Title:

RIADE Integrated Research for the Application of Technology and Innovative Processes to Combat Desertification

Objectives: Develop a structured and complex system for combating desertification. It shall provide a set of products for desertification modelling and forecast but also a decision making system for supporting public administration in environmental planning processes.
Sectorial Topic (Note): Desertification monitoring and assessment
Actor(s)[Nation(Ministry, Agency)/Organization]: A.C.S. S.p.A. - Advanced Computer System, Italian Agency for New Technologies, Energies and Environment - ENEA (Italy), Desertification Research Group of the University of Sassari (Italy)
Contents: Analysing the different types of desertification processes that characterise Southern Italy, selecting study areas most representative of the different phenomena, and setting up monitoring systems.
Developing innovative procedures for monitoring key aspects of desertification processes (e.g., use of radar data to estimate characteristics of rain, use of laser spectroscopy and isotopic analyses to evaluate soil erosion and underground water dynamics, analysis of historical satellite data to reconstruct vegetation dynamics, analysis of satellite data to map climatologically relevant variables).
Developing key indicators, and modeling desertification processes.
Developing a decision support system that allows audiovisual representation of desertification processes, historical reconstruction, and forecasting based on different climatic/economic scenarios.
Means of Implementation: Amount of financing 8.700.000,00 euro.
LANDSAT images are exploited for deriving landuse/landcover maps and several vegetation indexes such as NDVI and LAI. Coherence algorithms are applied to ERS SAR data for supporting vegetation mapping and assessing soil erosion estimates. This covers a 25 years period, which is sufficient for contributing to understanding desertification phenomena related to human activity. During this phase suitability of high resolution (IKONOS) and hyperspectral (MIVIS) sensors for extracting relevant parameters is explored. This will contribute to defining specifications for future sensors for environment monitoring.
Meteorological satellites, such as NOAA and METEOSAT are used for extracting and validating climatic maps, as a result of integration with ground data. This will contribute to analyse and monitor evaporation and evapotranspiration in the observed areas, but also to model local climatological phenomena, such as radiation fluxes and heat latency.
Target year: 2005
Target Area/Place: Italy - Southern Italy regions (Apulia, Basilicata, Sicily, Sardinia)
Expected Outcome(S): Innovation is the key concept of the RIADE project as the following achievement is expected: more holistic and systematic approach to desertification through an integrated project; development of a “what if” numerical model for environmental planning; on line data network to channel the outputs to society for a better fruition, learning and application (for experts, territorial authorities and administrators, non expert users). The definition of a decision support tool, whereby possible policies of intervention on landscape are defined quantitatively. A Master degree on desertification is foreseen within the project activities. It is structured in three parts: one on scientific background, one in which students will be involved into the project activities, and a last one on management aspects.
Relevance to the Plan of Implementation of WSSD: This project addresses several priority actions identified in the plan of implementation which are related to the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification to address causes of desertification and land degradation in order to maintain and restore land, and to address poverty resulting from land degradation (§ 41). In particular providing affordable local access to information to improve monitoring and early warning related to desertification and drought ( § 41, e).
Other Information:
(Contact): Dr Massimo Iannetta
ENEA
via Anguillarese, 306 00160 S. Maria di Galeria (Roma)
Tel. +39.06.30.48.33.39
E mail: miannetta@casaccia.enea.it
Link: http://www.riade.net
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