Assessment of irrigation water distribution using remotely sensed indicators: A case study of Doho Rice Irrigation Scheme, Uganda

The rising competition for scarce land and water resources and the need to satisfy the global food demand from an ever-growing population necessitates novel methods to monitor irrigation scheme performance for improved water use efficiency. The traditional methods employed in sub-Saharan Africa to assess irrigation performance are point-based, expensive, and time-consuming, making monitoring and evaluation of these capital-intensive projects difficult. This study aimed at employing satellite data with high spatial and temporal resolution in assessing the performance of Doho Rice Irrigation Scheme through estimations of actual evapotranspiration. Actual evapotranspiration (ETa) was modelled from Landsat 7 imagery using the surface energy balance system algorithm on five clear days between January and April 2020. Using equity and adequacy metrics, the derived ETa was used to assess the irrigation performance of the scheme. Results showed that the equity indicator was generally fair, with the coefficient of variation between 0.11 and 0.08, close to the 0.10 threshold implying irrigation water is fairly distributed within the scheme. The average adequacy was 0.87, above the 0.65 threshold, indicating adequate water supply throughout the scheme. The study’s findings can be used in future research and benchmarking with other irrigation schemes to address the country’s water resource management challenges.
Actual evapotranspiration, Irrigation performance assessment, Surface energy balance system, Equity, Adequacy
Wamala, F., Gidudu, A., Wanyama, J., Nakawuka, P., Bwambale, E., & Chukalla, A. D. (2023). Assessment of Irrigation Water Distribution Using Remotely Sensed Indicators: A Case Study of Doho Rice Irrigation Scheme, Uganda. Smart Agricultural Technology, 100184.