Full text: Proceedings of the Symposium on Global and Environmental Monitoring (Pt. 1)

programmes at FAO Headquarters and by regional and national food security early warning and locust control 
organizations in the IGADD (Eastern Africa) and SADCC (Southern Africa) Regions. 
For making ARTEMIS output products and other relevant data available in a timely manner at regional and 
national levels, a dedicated satellite communications system, DIANA (Data and Information Available Now 
in Africa), is currently being developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) in cooperation with the FAO 
Remote Sensing Centre. 
The DIANA system will, by mid-1991, provide a capability for high speed (64 kilobits/sec) two-way transfer of 
facsimile images of documents and maps, character coded text documents and digital images in raw or 
processed form from computers at FAO Headquarters to personal computer based terminals of recipients, 
initially in Africa, by using the commercial Intelsat satellites through the facilities of Telespazio in Italy. 
2. Satellite Remote Sensing Systems for Food Security and Locust Control 
The satellite systems carrying sensors with spectral, spatial, temporal and radiometric resolution characteristics 
suitable for precipitation and vegetation detection and monitoring, including agricultural production 
environment and desert locust habitat stratification, can be broadly divided in two major groups: 
(a) Environmental satellites 
This group consists of both geostationary and polar orbiting satellites which are characterized by relatively low 
spatial (1-5 km) and high temporal (30 min-12 hrs) resolutions. The European Meteosat, U.S. Geostationary 
Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) and National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration (NOAA) 
Satellites and the Japanese Geostationary Meterological Satellite (GMS) belong to this group. The sensors 
of these satellites were designed for observing atmospheric processes to support weather forecasting, including 
snowcover and precipitation assessment. Moreover, the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer 
(AVHRR) sensor on the NOAA satellites has spectral and radiometric characteristics suitable for vegetation 
detection and monitoring. Environmental satellite data allows monitoring of dynamic atmospheric and 
terrestrial phenomena. Facilities for receiving and processing this type of data are relatively low cost and the 
spatial characteristics of the data, combined with the orbital characteristics of the satellites, permit simultaneous 
observations on regional and continental scales. 
(b) Earth resources satellites 
This group of satellites is characterized by relatively high spatial (10-80 m) and relatively low temporal (16-18 
days) resolutions. The U.S. Landsat, French Satellite Probatoire d’Observation de la Terre (SPOT) and 
Japanese Marine Observational Satellite (MOS) polar orbiting satellites belong to this group. Their sensor 
characteristics make them suitable for stratification purposes and for detailed vegetation monitoring at a local 
At present, some of the above satellite systems, for example, Meteosat, NOAA, Landsat, SPOT, provide data 
on a fully operational basis generally within the time constraints of applications requiring realtime or 
near-realtime data to satisfy user information needs. 
3. Remote Sensing Techniques and Methodologies for Food Security Early Warning 
and Desert Locust Habitat Monitoring Operations 
Both in the field of food security early warning and desert locust control, the parameters soil moisture, as 
provided by precipitation, and quantity of green vegetation distribution, are significant indicators of agricultural 
production conditions and the ecological potential for the development of desert locust populations. 

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