Danielle Wood was awarded a NASA Applied Sciences grant to further work on the Decision Support System for Drought Response in Angola.
Watch a video to learn more about this project here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24oWeAZmBUU.
The project is pursued in collaboration with the Angolan National Space Agency called GGPEN, which will take the lead to coordinate with public and private organizations in Angola that have responsibilities related to drought. The US team also includes Prof Dara Entekhabi and Dr. Katlyn Turner from MIT as well as Dr. Yusuke Kuwayama of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and support from the Blue Raster data analytics and geospatial design company.
This project seeks to improve the use of satellite-based Earth Observation as an input to a Drought Decision Support System to inform the response to drought and floods in southern Angola. Specifically, the government of Angola needs to make decisions to evaluate the effectiveness of three categories of interventions to determine if these interventions are delivered to the regions in which residents face high vulnerability based on their sensitivity, exposure and adaptive capacity to drought hazards. The three interventions include: 1) Sending water trucks to deliver water to residents impacted by drought; 2) Providing funding, equipment and personnel to improve boreholes; and 3) Investing in long term infrastructure improvements in the Cunene River to allow catching and pumping of water during rainy periods. In addition, the Angola Drought Decision Support System contributes to a capability for the Government of Angola to organize information about the various entities that provide drought relief (included national government, regional government and non-profit entities such as UNICEF) and determine whether the combination of drought response efforts is delivered collectively to the regions with high vulnerability. To summarize, the government of Angola needs to use the Drought Decision Support System to make four high level decisions: 1) What routes & schedule should trucks use to deliver emergency water supplies to High Vulnerability regions? 2) What locations should be prioritized for borehole improvement projects to serve High Vulnerability regions? 3) What region of the Cunene River should be prioritized for long term infrastructure improvements to serve High Vulnerability regions? and 4) How should work on the three interventions be divided among government and nonprofit agencies to ensure that high vulnerability regions are served?
In January 2023, Danielle Wood visited GGPEN to hold a project kickoff and learn more about the needs of local stakeholders working on drought.