Monitoring Agricultural Investments in Ethiopia: A Remote Sensing Based Approach

Matthias Hack, Fabian Löw et all

Between 2005 and 2016, the Ethiopian Government leased about 2.4 million hectares of land for commercial agricultural investments to private domestic and foreign investors as means to economic growth, food security and job creation. In order to steer these vast amount of large-scale agricultural investments towards the envisaged benefits, it is crucial to monitor the investments’ implementation progress frequently. However, so far, the mandated agencies have neither the resources nor the capacities to check the implementation status of every contracted investment.
Germany and the European Union officially support the Government of Ethiopia in improving policies and administration concerning large-scale agricultural investments towards sustainable and economically and socially responsible outcomes. Therefore, the Project Support to Responsible Agricultural Investments - implemented by Deutsche Geselllschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH - provides technical support to the official Ethiopian partner institutions and other involved stakeholders like investors, local population and civil society organizations. One field of action is the establishment of a functional monitoring system, which will deliver regular information on the status of each large-scale agricultural investment. To this end, the project collaborates i.a. with the Joint Reseach Center of the European Commission.
This paper describes how the envisaged monitoring system will make use of high-resolution satellite imagery from the Copernicus Earth Observation Program of the European Union, namely Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 satellites. The data as well as the software to process and download the data are free of charge and publically accessible. The workflow of downloading satellite images, pre-processing these data sets, and transforming the satellite data into information related to the actual land use and land use change within large-scale agricultural investments is designed in a way that it is easy to implement and to replicate.

Event: Land Governance in an Interconnected World_Annual World Bank Conference on Land and Poverty_2018

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Document type:Monitoring Agricultural Investments in Ethiopia: A Remote Sensing Based Approach (3028 kB - pdf)