Water Auditing Application
Real-time insight in irrigated water use
The majority of the world’s fresh water is used for agriculture and a smaller part for domestic and industrial use. In many countries irrigation water for agricultural purposes is unbalanced due to complex distribution systems, limited maintenance, lack of in-situ monitoring systems and unavailable tooling. For that reason it often occurs that large quantities of water are spilled by upstream users which have abundancy, leaving less and too little water for other users, often in downstream plots. The situation becomes more severe when too little water has to be distributed, resulting in water shortages and disputes. In such situations tools to monitor water use can be extremely helpful to assist water managers in determining locations where water is spilled or simply places where water is used in illegal quantities. Such tools also help determining upcoming water shortage and situations of lack of water at specific agricultural plots. They support identifying unbalanced distribution of water and in situations of shortage to generate more crop per drop.
The Water Auditing Application is a satellite based and low-cost compliance monitoring solution to identify farms that use more water for irrigation than allowed. The satellite-based water auditing application monitors the volumes of water used in irrigated agriculture on a regular basis. It then automatically checks this against the permitted volumes, flagging non-compliance. The methodology is field specific and can be applied for large areas, even in transboundary catchments. The tool developed gives water managers facts to base their practices on and enhances the effectiveness of their operations leading to more equal water distribution across agricultural areas. The Waterauditing dashboard highlights areas with excessive water use, supporting water managers to optimize their permit enforcement strategies.