Harvest partner Krishna Prasad Vadrevu (NASA Marshall) with co-editors Chris Justice (Harvest), and Geoglam colleagues Thuy Le Toan (CESBIO, France) and Shibendu Shankar Ray (Mahalanobis National Crop Forecasting Center, Ministry of Agriculture, India) recently published a book entitled Remote Sensing of Agriculture and Land Cover/Land Use Changes in South and Southeast Asian Countries.
The book focuses on remote sensing of agriculture in South/Southeast Asian countries, providing a description of the latest algorithms, tools, and techniques in remote sensing specific to agriculture and methodologies to aid the development of operating tools for crop mapping and monitoring.
Spread over 4 topic areas, the book has 34 chapters written by 200 authors. The first topic area looks at international, regional, and national agricultural programs and includes contributions from regional space agency scientists on agriculture/crop monitoring including from NASA LCLUC agriculture projects, NASA Harvest, JAXA (Japan), GISTDA (Thailand), ISRO-Mahalanobis Crop Forecasting Center, Ministry of Agriculture (India), International Rice Research Institute (IRRI, Philippines). The book also covers popular rice mapping and monitoring international projects in the region such as Asia-Rice, which involves more than 15 countries.
Subsequent chapters are split between topic areas including: “Crop Mapping, Monitoring, Yield and Water Resources”; “Prediction and Modeling”; and “Agricultural Land Cover/Land Use Changes”.
NASA Harvest submitted a chapter detailing our history, current work, and the scientific outputs we have produced since our establishment. Members of the NASA Harvest Consortium also wrote chapters on water use and crop yield simulation and land cover change modeling.
The book comes at an important time for the region. South and Southeast Asia contains major food producers and plays an important role in global food supply. The region is also home to a large and growing population, is seeing increased land cover conversion, and is undergoing changes in consumption patterns. These factors combine and interplay to create significant levels of change across the region. Planning for and adapting to this change requires accurate and operational monitoring techniques and regimes to ensure that food production goals are met while also protecting biodiversity and the environment, and permitting for necessary human development.
Unfortunately, one of the book’s editors, Dr. Shibendu Ray (Head at the Mahalanobis National Crop Forecast Center, Ministry of Agriculture, India), passed away on May 4th, 2021, due to COVID and could not see the book to fruition. Dr. Shibendu was a tireless promoter of remote sensing applications of agriculture. Throughout his career he developed a number of innovative applications and fostered friendships among remote sensing scientists across the globe.