Science For a Hungry World | NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center

By Molly Brown, Famine Early Warning Network (FEWS NET), US-AID, Posted 10/22/09


If a particular region is going to have a bad harvest, FEWS NET looks at the strength of the community. They look at how much was produced in previous years. Is this the first bad year after many good years or is it the fifth bad year in a row? So it's all about context. If we understand the context, we can then provide accurate early warning of a crisis before it comes down the pike."

"Satellite remote sensing, particularly with vegetation, because of its certainty and reliability across space and time has really come to be absolutely critical in trying to determine when there's a problem. and when action is required. Having that early look at production that we get from remote sensing observations is critical to having the pieces in place and the analysis done and the people forewarned so that if there is a requirement for sending out food assitance, we will have all the little pieces in place so that we can do that in a rapid way."

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