The pilot project focuses on using Earth observation (EO) technologies to build climate resilience, with fieldwork taking place from February 25 to March 2, 2023. A consortium of local and international entities is investigating the five issues affecting the community that were identified with extensive community consultation: seagrass trends, inconsistent agricultural yield, coastal erosion, coral reef health, and changing mangrove ecosystems. Data was collected through expert observations, citizen science, surveys, UAV imaging, and satellite imagery. Preliminary findings highlight the impact of agricultural fertilizers, infrastructure development, and climate change on seagrass, mangroves, and coral reefs as well as beach replenishment rates. The project aims to scale up findings and incorporate climate-resilient modeling and planning to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals nationwide once completed.
Satellite remote sensing is an incredibly exciting tool; it can provide regular, accurate, objective, and scalable measurements, particularly in vast or remote areas that are difficult to reach like the Maldives’ 1,192 islands. The Maldives Space Research Organisation (MSRO) seeks to position space technologies for relevance and use right now to spur new ideas and solutions. It aims to work with like-minded impact-driven organizations enthusiastic about using space to make a real difference on the ground.
Data analysis and hyperspectral imagery was carried out in over 12 locations of interest within the atoll, with preliminary results presented to stakeholders and further expeditions planned.