Landsat's Critical Role in Agriculture
Worldwide, millions of people are helped by Landsat-data-based decisions that impact food and water management. Food and farming organizations rely on the unbiased, accurate and timely information provided by Landsat satellites. The data enable people to analyze the health and vigor of crops as they mature over the growing season; the needs of specific fields for fertilizer, irrigation and rotation; planted acreage to forecast crop production and fight crop insurance fraud; how much water is used in irrigation; and the impacts of drought.
Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed an automated technique that uses Landsat to determine when swine waste lagoons were constructed and how they may have affected environmental quality.
Kustas’ research informed the new OpenET app that uses Landsat thermal data as a key data input.
‘Green tides’ of algae have wreaked havoc across the coastlines of Brittany, France, for half a century due to high levels of agricultural runoff. With efforts to reduce these underway, a new technique using over three decades of satellite images highlights the extent of the continuing problem.