Geohydrological conceptualization from a remotely sensed simplified water balance in the sandveld, South Africa

Munch, Zahn ; Gibson, Lesley A. (2012)

CITATION: Munch, Z. & Gibson, L. A. 2012. Geohydrological conceptualization from a remotely sensed simplified water balance in the sandveld, South Africa. IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium : Remote Sensing for a Dynamic Earth, 22-27 July, Munich, Germany.

The original publication is available http://www.igarss2012.org/Papers/PublicSessionIndex3.asp?Sessionid=1149

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The Sandveld (Western Cape, South Africa), located on the Cape West Coast, is characterized by low rainfall and minimal river flows, however despite this limitation, significant aquifer systems are found [1]. The groundwater in the region supports extensive agriculture and supplies towns with water for domestic use. The use of remote sensing can influence the way in which groundwater resources can be managed despite the fact that it is a subsurface resource and therefore cannot be directly measured by remote sensing techniques. The G30F catchment in the Northern Sandveld is reported to be experiencing water stress due to increasing abstraction for domestic water supply and agriculture, particularly potato crops. As suggested by Brunner et al [2], we propose the use of the simplified water balance determined from remote sensing data to estimate recharge and discharge zones within the catchment. Furthermore, we propose that this method is a useful aid in the geohydrological conceptualization of this particular water system. Of particular interest is the use of the recently released MOD16 evapotranspiration (ET) data product together with a precipitation data product, highlighting the ease with which studies of this nature can now be executed.

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