The applications of hydrologic models driven by open source Earth Observation (EO) and satellite data is central in water resources planning and management decisions in any river basin. SERVIR E&SA is supporting and building technical capacity of the Tanzanian Ministry of Water and Irrigation (MOWI)- The Directorate of Water Resources DIVISION (DWRD) and Basin Water Boards of Rufiji and Wami-Ruvu in the development of basin operational hydrological model (VIC) system for streamflow monitoring and forecasting using open source EO data to aid water resources planning and management decisions.
Through this effort the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD), which is the hub of SERVIR Eastern and Southern Africa project (SERVIR ESA), with support from NASA’s SERVIR Science Coordination Office (SCO) conducted technical e-training workshop on hydrological model set up, simulation, calibration, validation and results interpretation for water resources planning and management decisions between August 10 and 31, 2020.
It aimed to support the Ministry of Water and Irrigation (MOWI)- Directorate of Water Resources Division and Basin Water Boards on the application of freely earth observation and satellite data and robust hydrological models in supporting water resources monitoring, planning and management decisions in the region. Therefore, it will involve technical staffs from the Ministry of Water and Irrigation (MoWI), Basin Water Boards of Rufiji and Wami-Ruvu, Tanzanian Water Institute (TWI), TANNESCO, National Environment Management Council (NEMC), WARIDI, National Irrigation Commission and researchers from University of Sokoine, University of Dar Es Salaam - Department of Water Resources Engineering (WRED) and Ardhi University.
The e-training was a build-up on the needs assessment workshop held on June 5 and 6 2018 in Dar Es Salaam, GIS and Remote Sensing workshop conducted on September 25 to 27, 2018 in Iringa, Hydrological Model Training workshop held on September 9 to 13, 2019, the Stakeholders Consultative meeting with MOWI, WARIDI, Rufiji and Wami-Ruvu Basin Water Boards held on December 2 to 6, 2019 in Tanzania and pre-e-training evaluation conducted by RCMRD in the period of June 2020. The e-training involved hands-on practical skill sessions on basin set-up, EO data mining, and processing model set up, simulation, calibration, performance evaluation & validation, model results interpretation and application to water resources planning and management decisions.
The objectives of the training included:
i. Basic understanding on the operational hydrological models for water resources management decisions;
ii. To provide basic understanding and application Google Earth Engine (GEE), Earth Observation data mining, processing and analysis for hydrological modelling;
iii. To develop hand-on skills in Earth Observation data processing for VIC Model input.
v. To provide hands-on skills on hydrological mode (VIC)l set-up, simulation, calibration and validation for water resources management decisions.
vi. Enhanced transferable skills on model results interpretation and application for water resources management decisions within the basin.
vii. Soliciting user feedback on the training and desired model features to support river basin operations.
It was anticipated that by the end of the technical training, participants would:
i. Improve their understanding and skills on hydrological modelling
ii. Be conversant with basic understanding of GEE and its application in EO data mining, processing and analysis
iii. Be able to apply EO data and techniques to process data sets for VIC model not only to the two basins but also to other basin of relevance.
iv. Be able to set-up, simulate, rout, calibrate and validate the VIC model output.
v. Be able to interpret the model output to support river basin water planning and management decisions.
vi. Be able to provide Informative feedback on the training, the modeling software, desired features, and future needs that could improve the system.