The Department of Geography Speaker Series presents the Robinson Colloquium given by Prof., Chair, Geography University of Maryland Chris Justice on, Global Agricultural Monitoring: Detecting the Impact of Extreme Climate Events.
The occurrence of extreme climate events and growing global population have given increased attention to global food security. Providing timely and transparent information on shortfalls in global crop production is an important step to mitigating price volatility and responding to food shortages. Satellite observations when combined with meteorological information, provide a means to monitor aspects of global agriculture. The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) is an international organization developed to coordinate enhanced use of such global earth observations. GEOGLAM is GEO’s global agricultural monitoring initiative endorsed by the G20 Agricultural Ministers. As a contribution to GEOGLAM, researchers at the University of Maryland’s Department of Geographical Sciences, Center for Global Agricultural Monitoring Research have developed a satellite-based global agricultural monitoring system in support of global agricultural markets and food security. The Crop Monitor system provides monthly assessments of global crop condition in an easy to interpret format. The system is also being applied at the national scale in a number of countries. The availability of high temporal frequency observations combined with high performance computing is opening the door to new possibilities in agricultural monitoring. Research and development are also being undertaken to develop remote sensing methods for estimating crop production.