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See detailImpact de l’érosion littorale dans les villes côtières africaines: de la procrastination des pouvoirs publics à la migration forcée des plus précaires. Cas de Cotonou, Bénin
Ozer, Pierre ULg; Hountondji, Yvon-Carmen; de Longueville, Florence et al

Poster (2013, December 19)

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux ... [more ▼]

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux activités humaines parmi lesquelles les perturbations sédimentaires occasionnées par la construction de divers barrages dont celui de Nangbéto sur le fleuve Mono ; le blocage du transit littoral par les ouvrages portuaires de Cotonou ; les carrières de sable exploitées à même la plage ; et la diminution d’apports sédimentaires provenant de l’ouest suite à divers travaux de protection des côtes. En utilisant la fonction multi dates disponible dans Google Earth, cet article estime la superficie érodée à Cotonou entre 2002 et 2011 à l’est de l’exutoire du Lac Nokoué. En outre, il évalue le nombre de maisons détruites ainsi que le nombre de personnes contraintes à une migration forcée. Les figures sont importantes puisque de l’ordre de cent mètres de zone côtière ont totalement disparu en une décennie sur un tronçon de près de six kilomètres de long en pleine ville ou en proche périphérie. [less ▲]

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See detailContribution à l’optimisation de la localisation des zones adaptées au développement de l'agriculture périurbaine dans la commune de Parakou (Bénin) : étude des potentialités à partir des données multi sources (spatiales et socioéconomiques)
Hountondji, Yvon Carmen; de Longueville, Florence; Ozer, Pierre ULg

Poster (2013, December 19)

Le présent document vise de façon globale à produire des bases techniques pour une mise en valeur rationnelle des zones adaptées au développement de l’agriculture d’appoint (produits de contre-saison) à ... [more ▼]

Le présent document vise de façon globale à produire des bases techniques pour une mise en valeur rationnelle des zones adaptées au développement de l’agriculture d’appoint (produits de contre-saison) à la périphérie de la ville de Parakou. Nous avons mis au point un outil technique pour appuyer la municipalité de Parakou (qui est en forte demande d’expertise) dans la gestion du foncier rural et urbain et à développer, autour de cette gestion foncière, des investissements à caractère économique et des actions de préservation des ressources naturelles. Sur base d’une approche systémique basée à la fois sur des données biophysiques (notamment spatiales) et socio-économiques, nous avons développé un outil de planification spatiale et d’aide à la décision pour l’ensemble des acteurs communaux investis sur la problématique du développement agricole local et de l’aménagement des espaces périurbains. [less ▲]

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See detailÉVOLUTION CLIMATIQUE, PERCEPTION ET ADAPTATION DES COMMUNAUTES RURALES DU PLATEAU D’ABOMEY (BENIN)
Ozer, Pierre ULg; Hountondji, Yvon-Carmen; Ahomadegbe, Mathias et al

in Boko, Michel; Vissin, Expédit W.; Afouda, Fulgence (Eds.) CLIMAT, AGRICULTURE & RESSOURCES EN EAU d'hier à demain (2013, September)

West Africa is extremely vulnerable to climate change. This paper first analyses recent trends in extreme rainfall and temperatures recorded at six synoptic stations in Benin. Results show that rainfall ... [more ▼]

West Africa is extremely vulnerable to climate change. This paper first analyses recent trends in extreme rainfall and temperatures recorded at six synoptic stations in Benin. Results show that rainfall is declining while temperatures are increasing significantly. Cold nights (1st TMin percentile) are decreasing very significantly while hot days (99th TMax percentile) are increasing very significantly. No trend is observed in the frequency of extreme rainfall events. Then, rural populations of the plateau of Abomey were interviewed about their perception of climatic risks. They highlighted that major risks are spatiotemporal rain variability and rainfall shortage / excess (drought / flood), strong winds, and excessive temperature. Confronted with these hazards, local farmers are developing on their own endogenous strategies, which are mostly not rational and far from solving climatic hazards in a sustainable way. More detailed studies are needed in order to identify together with these communities pragmatic and sustainable adaptive options. [less ▲]

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See detailErosion littorale et migrations forcées de réfugiés environnementaux. L'exemple de Cotonou, Bénin
Ozer, Pierre ULg; Hountondji, Yvon-Carmen; de Longueville, Florence

Poster (2013, September)

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux ... [more ▼]

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux activités humaines parmi lesquelles les perturbations sédimentaires occasionnées par la construction de divers barrages dont celui de Nangbéto sur le fleuve Mono ; le blocage du transit littoral par les ouvrages portuaires de Cotonou ; les carrières de sable exploitées à même la plage ; et la diminution d’apports sédimentaires provenant de l’ouest suite à divers travaux de protection des côtes. En utilisant la fonction multi dates disponible dans Google Earth, cet article estime la superficie érodée à Cotonou entre 2002 et 2011 à l’est de l’exutoire du Lac Nokoué. En outre, il évalue le nombre de maisons détruites ainsi que le nombre de personnes contraintes à une migration forcée. Les figures sont importantes puisque de l’ordre de cent mètres de zone côtière ont totalement disparu au cours des dix dernières années sur un tronçon de près de six kilomètres de long en pleine ville ou en proche périphérie. Cette analyse montre qu’actuellement les dommageables modifications géomorphologiques résultent essentiellement de l’addition non envisagée d’activités humaines couplée à l’absence de gouvernance. Par ailleurs, nous sommes en droit de nous interroger sur les risques d’érosion côtière dans les décennies à venir avec l’amplification annoncée de l’augmentation du niveau des océans due au réchauffement climatique. [less ▲]

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See detailErosion littorale et migrations forcées de réfugiés environnementaux. L'exemple de Cotonou, Bénin
Ozer, Pierre ULg; Hountondji, Yvon-Carmen; de Longueville, Florence

in 8th International conference (IAG) on Geomorphology: « Geomorphology and sustainability », Paris, 27-31 August 2013 (2013, August)

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux ... [more ▼]

Situé dans le Golfe de Guinée, le littoral béninois est soumis –sur certains tronçons– à une érosion assez rapide ces dernières décennies. Cette érosion côtière est principalement due actuellement aux activités humaines parmi lesquelles les perturbations sédimentaires occasionnées par la construction de divers barrages dont celui de Nangbéto sur le fleuve Mono ; le blocage du transit littoral par les ouvrages portuaires de Cotonou ; les carrières de sable exploitées à même la plage ; et la diminution d’apports sédimentaires provenant de l’ouest suite à divers travaux de protection des côtes. En utilisant la fonction multi dates disponible dans Google Earth, cet article estime la superficie érodée à Cotonou entre 2002 et 2011 à l’est de l’exutoire du Lac Nokoué. En outre, il évalue le nombre de maisons détruites ainsi que le nombre de personnes contraintes à une migration forcée. Les figures sont importantes puisque de l’ordre de cent mètres de zone côtière ont totalement disparu au cours des dix dernières années sur un tronçon de près de six kilomètres de long en pleine ville ou en proche périphérie. Cette analyse montre qu’actuellement les dommageables modifications géomorphologiques résultent essentiellement de l’addition non envisagée d’activités humaines couplée à l’absence de gouvernance. Par ailleurs, nous sommes en droit de nous interroger sur les risques d’érosion côtière dans les décennies à venir avec l’amplification annoncée de l’augmentation du niveau des océans due au réchauffement climatique. [less ▲]

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See detailSaharan dust impacts on air quality: What are the potential health risks in West Africa?
de Longueville, Florence; Hountondji, Yvon-Carmen; Ozer, Pierre ULg et al

in Human & Ecological Risk Assessment (2013), 19

Despite the proximity of the Sahara, very few studies about dust impact on air quality and human health have been conducted in West Africa. The lack of data is a major constraint on our understanding of ... [more ▼]

Despite the proximity of the Sahara, very few studies about dust impact on air quality and human health have been conducted in West Africa. The lack of data is a major constraint on our understanding of the impacts on human health in this area. We analyzed PM10 concentrations and horizontal visibility recorded in four West African stations. The pollution levels often exceed the standards defined by many countries/regulatory authorities and have been associated with serious health risks outside Africa. Over the Sahelian stations, 45.6% of the days between November 2006 and March 2007 were likely to impact human health and the studied Sudanian population was exposed to potential health effects every 5 days. [less ▲]

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See detailDesert dust impacts on human health: an alarming worldwide reality and a need for studies in West Africa
de Longueville, Florence; Ozer, Pierre ULg; Doumbia, Seydou et al

in International Journal of Biometeorology (2013), 57

High desert dust concentrations raise concerns about adverse health effects on human populations. Based on a systematic literature review, this paper aims to learn more about the relationship between ... [more ▼]

High desert dust concentrations raise concerns about adverse health effects on human populations. Based on a systematic literature review, this paper aims to learn more about the relationship between desert dust and human health in the world and to analyse the place of West Africa as a study area of interest. Papers focussing on the potential relationship between dust and health and showing quantitative analyses, published between January 1999 and September 2011, were identified using the ISI Web of Knowledge database (N = 50). A number of adverse health effects, including respiratory, cardiovascular and cardiopulmonary diseases, are associated with dust. This survey highlights obvious dust impacts on human health independently of the study area, health outcomes and method. Moreover, it reveals an imbalance between the areas most exposed to dust and the areas most studied in terms of health effects. None of these studies has been conducted in West Africa, despite the proximity of the Sahara, which produces about half of the yearly global mineral dust. In view of the alarming results in many parts of the world (Asia, Europe, America), this paper concludes by stressing the importance of carrying out impact studies of Saharan dust in West Africa, where dust events are more frequent and intense than anywhere else. [less ▲]

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See detailLand Cover Dynamics (1990-2002) in Binh Thuan Province, Southern Central Vietnam
Hountondji, Yvon ULg; de Longueville, Florence; Ozer, Pierre ULg

in International Journal of Asian Social Science (2012), 2(3), 336-349

This paper describes the use of satellite imageries and GIS data for identifying key environmental characteristics of Binh Thuan Province in south central Vietnam and for detecting the major changes ... [more ▼]

This paper describes the use of satellite imageries and GIS data for identifying key environmental characteristics of Binh Thuan Province in south central Vietnam and for detecting the major changes patterns within this region. Landsat TM (1990) and Landsat ETM+ (2002) imageries were used to classify the study area into seven land use and land cover (LULC) classes. A post-classification comparison analysis was used to quantify and illustrate the various LULC conversions that took place over the 12-year span of time. Results showed that a steady growth in population has caused extensive changes of land cover throughout the area. The maps also indicate that the loss of woody land (forest) and the extension of wetlands (irrigated area), combined with built-up encroachment, remains one of the most serious environmental problems facing the Binh Thuan Province today. The post-classification change detection analysis showed that critical habitats accounted for nearly 38.5% of the intensive study area between 1990 and 2002 while 61.5% remained stable. Results also showed over the 12-year span, approximately 1151.2 km² (115.120 ha) forest were converted respectively to brush, irrigated area (wetlands), cropland and built-up. This is an overall average decrease of 9594 hectares of forested area per year. Throughout the study area, districts most affected by forest conversion to another land cover are: Bac Bihn (2798 ha/year), Than Linh (2717 ha/year), Ham Thuan Nam (1601 ha/year) and Ham Thuan Bac (1524 ha/year). Based on the identified causes of these changes, we made policy recommendations for better management of land use and land cover. [less ▲]

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See detailThe tsunami in South-East Asia – a retrospective analysis of the management of an apocalyptic natural disaster
Ozer, Pierre ULg; de Longueville, Florence

in Cybergeo : Revue Européenne de Géographie = Cybergeo - European Journal of Geography (2011)

The tsunami that affected the coasts of the Indian ocean on December 26, 2004 claimed close to 226 000 lives, mainly on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia, which suffered overwhelming devastation. This ... [more ▼]

The tsunami that affected the coasts of the Indian ocean on December 26, 2004 claimed close to 226 000 lives, mainly on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia, which suffered overwhelming devastation. This article asks whether a tsunami warning system is needed in the Indian Ocean, where the probability of experiencing a similar catastrophe is very small. In addition, other alternatives, including land use planning and education focused on tsunami risk management, are presented. Their application could considerably reduce financial and human losses if a disaster of this nature was to occur again. [less ▲]

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See detailTrends in extreme rainfall events in Benin (West Africa), 1960-2000
Hountondji, Yvon ULg; de Longueville, Florence; Ozer, Pierre ULg

in Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Energy, Environment and Climate Change (2011, August 26)

Global dataset of derived indicators has been compiled to clarify whether the frequency and / or the severity of rainfall extremes changed during the 1960 – 2000 period in the Republic of Benin in West ... [more ▼]

Global dataset of derived indicators has been compiled to clarify whether the frequency and / or the severity of rainfall extremes changed during the 1960 – 2000 period in the Republic of Benin in West Africa. This period provides the best spatial coverage of homogenous daily series, which can be used for calculating the proportion of global land area exhibiting a significant change in extreme or severe rainfall. We selected 12 indicators of extreme climatic events that are based on daily totals of precipitation. The six first indicators are the annual total precipitation (RTOT); the annual total of wet days (with daily rainfall >= 1mm, Rd); the simple day intensity index (SDII) calculated as the average rainfall from wet days; the annual maximum rainfall recorded during 1, 5, and 30 days (Rx1d, Rx5d, and Rx30d). The other six indices are based on the 95th and 99th percentiles calculated from the daily rainfall data over the 1961-1990 period, that is the 30-year period required by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) for the calculation of normals. The 95th percentile defines a very wet day. The 99th percentile corresponds to an extreme rainfall event. Based on these percentiles, three extreme precipitation indices were chosen. Very wet day and extreme rainfall frequency are based on the annual count of days with rainfall >= 95th and 99th percentiles of 1961-1990 (R95p and R99p). Very wet day and extreme rainfall intensity corresponds to the annual total precipitation recorded from days with rainfall >= 95th and 99th percentiles of 1961-1990 (R95pSUM and R99pSUM). Very wet day and extreme rainfall proportion is the percentage of the annual total precipitation recorded from days with rainfall >= 95th and 99th percentiles of 1961-1990 (R95pTOT and R99pTOT) and measures how much of the total rain comes from very wet or extreme events. Only time series which had complete records from 1960 to 2000 were used. A total of 21 stations time series were extracted from national climate archives and collated into the unique dataset described here. National maps showing trends during the 1960-2000 period were produced. Results show that only the annual total precipitation, the annual total of wet days and the annual maximum rainfall recorded during 30 days present a significant decreasing trend while the other nine rainfall indicators appear to remain stable. These results are important findings for Benin since scarce works realized in neighbouring regions of West Africa describe a situation more prone to increases in extreme rainfall (in Nigeria [1]) or the opposite (in Guinea Conakry [2] and in Niger [3]) in a similar context of a clear reduction in the yearly precipitation amount. We call for further research on this topic in West Africa since water management is a major tool for sustainable development and poverty alleviation. [1] M. New, B. Hewitson, D.B. Stephenson, et al., “Evidence of trends in daily climate extremes over southern and West Africa,” J. Geophys. Res., vol. 111, 2006, D14102, doi:10.1029/2005JD006289. [2] E. Aguilar, A. Aziz Barry, M. Brunet, et al., “Changes in temperature and precipitation extremes in western central Africa, Guinea Conakry, and Zimbabwe, 1955–2006,” J. Geophys. Res., vol. 114, 2009, D02115, doi: 10.1029/2008JD011010. [3] P. Ozer, Y.C. Hountondji, O. Laminou Manzo, “Evolution des caractéristiques pluviométriques dans l’est du Niger de 1940 à 2007,” GEO-ECO-TROP, Vol. 33, pp. 11-30, 2009. [less ▲]

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See detailEffets du réchauffement global sur les variables climatiques et hydrologiques au Bénin: Analyse de l’année 2010 par rapport aux données historiques
Ozer, Pierre ULg; Afouda, Abel; Hountondji, Yvon ULg et al

Scientific conference (2010, December 22)

Le Bénin a été affecté par des inondations de grande ampleur durant l'hivernage 2010, affectant plus de 350 000 personnes, causant près de 100 000 sans-abri et tuant à 43 reprises. L'objectif de cette ... [more ▼]

Le Bénin a été affecté par des inondations de grande ampleur durant l'hivernage 2010, affectant plus de 350 000 personnes, causant près de 100 000 sans-abri et tuant à 43 reprises. L'objectif de cette recherche est de voir si ces inondations revêtent un caractère exceptionnel ou non du point de vue de l'aléa. Pour ce faire, nous caractérisons les précipitations du réseau synoptique du Bénin sur la période 1940-2009 à partir de différents indices et analysons ensuite l'année 2010. [...] [less ▲]

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See detailWhat do we know about effects of desert dust on air quality and human health in West Africa compared to other regions?
de Longueville, Florence; Hountondji, Yvon ULg; Henry, Sabine et al

in Science of the Total Environment (2010), 409(1), 1-8

This study aims to compare, on the one hand, the geographical distribution of the desert dust source areas, their contribution to quantities emitted into the atmosphere, the trajectories and the ... [more ▼]

This study aims to compare, on the one hand, the geographical distribution of the desert dust source areas, their contribution to quantities emitted into the atmosphere, the trajectories and the quantities deposited, with on the other hand the areas of research interest focused on the desert dust impacts on air quality and/or human health. Based on a systematic review of the literature using the ISI Web of Knowledge database, we found 231 articles published over the last decade on the desert dust impacts on air quality. Of these, 48% concerned Asian dust and 39% Saharan dust, with the remaining 13% divided between the other dust source areas. However, only one of these studies addressed the worsening air pollution in West Africa, even though it is very close to the Sahara, the greatest contributor to the global dust budget. Moreover, there have been very few studies (41) looking at the direct links between desert dust and human health; in this context too, no interest has been shown in West Africa. Yet this region is also among the areas in which morbidity rates have been noted to be far higher than those found in other regions of the world, and where respiratory infections alone account for more than 20% of the causes of infant mortality. This survey highlights a clear imbalance between those areas most exposed to dust and the most studied areas in terms of dust impacts. Given these findings and the often alarming results published about other regions of the world, we advocate a revival of interest in research on West Africa in order to achieve a better understanding of the desert dust impacts on air quality and health among the populations of this region. [less ▲]

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See detailEffects of desert dust on air quality and human health. What do we know about West Africa compared to other regions?
De Longueville, Florence; Henry, Sabine; Ozer, Pierre ULg

Conference (2009, February 24)

The main source of atmospheric mineral dust is the Sahara and its desertified margins that produce about half of the yearly global mineral dust. Saharan dust is often transported far away to the sources ... [more ▼]

The main source of atmospheric mineral dust is the Sahara and its desertified margins that produce about half of the yearly global mineral dust. Saharan dust is often transported far away to the sources and causes air quality deterioration impacting northwards the Mediterranean and Europe, westwards crossing the Atlantic Ocean to the United States, the Caribbean and South America, and southwards to the Gulf of Guinea. Saharan dust storms can lead to particulate levels that exceed internationally recommended levels and transport allergens, including bacteria and fungi. Therefore special attention is paid to dust storms as such mineral particulate matter air pollution may be a serious health threat in various regions of the world because it may promote respiratory infection, cardiovascular disease and other ailments. [less ▲]

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See detailSaharan Dust Pollution: Implications for the Sahel?
de Longueville, Florence; Henry, Sabine; Ozer, Pierre ULg

in Epidemiology (Cambridge, Mass.) (2009), 20(5), 780

The main source of atmospheric mineral dust is the Sahara desert, which produces about half of the yearly global mineral dust.1 About 12% of the Saharan dust moves northwards to Europe, 28% westwards to ... [more ▼]

The main source of atmospheric mineral dust is the Sahara desert, which produces about half of the yearly global mineral dust.1 About 12% of the Saharan dust moves northwards to Europe, 28% westwards to the Americas, and 60% southwards to the Gulf of Guinea. Saharan dust storms can lead to particulate matter (PM) levels that exceed internationally recommended levels. Recently, special attention has been paid to the mineral PM air pollution of dust storms, which may be a serious health threat. We took a systematic review of the literature to find relevant studies on the effects of Saharan dust on air quality or human health. We searched the ISI web of knowledge database using “PM10,” “PM2.5” or “health” AND “dust storm,” “sand storm,” “African dust,” “Saharan dust,” or “dust events” without restrictions. The search extended from January 1999 to December 2008. We selected 97 articles of which 72 studied PM air pollution in Europe, 13 in the Americas, 7 in the Near East and Asia, and 4 considered international data. Only one specifically addressed air pollution in the Sahel. Four focused on human health effects—2 in the Mediterranean and 2 in the Caribbean. [less ▲]

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See detailConception d’une méthode destinée à promouvoir l’implantation de bandes herbeuses extensives dans les prairies permanentes en Wallonie.
De Longueville, Florence; Tychon, Bernard ULg; Oger, Robert et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment [=BASE] (2007), 11(1), 19-26

Conception of a method to promote extensive grassy headland’s establishment in permanent meadows of the Walloon Region. In accordance with agriculture evolution in Europe, the Walloon Region has ... [more ▼]

Conception of a method to promote extensive grassy headland’s establishment in permanent meadows of the Walloon Region. In accordance with agriculture evolution in Europe, the Walloon Region has emphasized the importance of buffer zones in agricultural parcels since many years. Consequently, one of the agri-environmental measures in force at the present time concerns extensive grassland strips settlement in agricultural parcels. Buffer zones preserve river quality, reduce soil erosion, diversify landscapes and promote biodiversity. With a Geographic Information System (GIS) based on the Integrated Administration and Control System (IACS) of the Walloon General Directorate of Agriculture, it is possible to detect parcel sections where farmers can introduce extensive strips in accordance with legal specifications in order to benefit of grants. Results of the new method are presented in a diagnostic table which includes an indicator expressing the total grantable strips length (in meters) at the exploitation scale. Its calculation is based on existing strips, surface and location of permanent meadow parcels. Results are completed with cartographic representation of settlement’s possibilities for each exploitation. These two complementary tools – diagnostic table and geographical map – can be very useful to manage agricultural exploitations. [less ▲]

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See detailBulletin agrométéorologique - Septembre 2006
Tychon, Bernard ULg; Denis, Antoine ULg; De Longueville, Florence et al

in Bulletin Agrométéorologique (2006), 5(6), 1-4

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See detailMonitoring of the crop water stress in Belgium. The case of the 2003 heat wave.
Horion, Stephanie; Tychon, Bernard ULg; de Longueville, Florence

Conference (2006, October)

In this paper the crop water stress is evaluated with three different indices: (i) the Relative Soil Moisture Index [RSMI] resulting from agrometeorological model simulations, (ii) the Normalized ... [more ▼]

In this paper the crop water stress is evaluated with three different indices: (i) the Relative Soil Moisture Index [RSMI] resulting from agrometeorological model simulations, (ii) the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, [NDVI] applied on S10 SPOT-VGT imagery, (iii) the Normalized Difference Water Index, [NDWI] applied on S10 SPOT-VGT imagery. [less ▲]

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See detailMonitoring of the crop water stress in Belgium. The case of the 2003 heat wave.
Horion, Stéphanie; Tychon, Bernard ULg; de Longueville, Florence

Conference (2006, October)

In this paper the crop water stress is evaluated with three different indices: (i) the Relative Soil Moisture Index [RSMI] resulting from agrometeorological model simulations, (ii) the Normalized ... [more ▼]

In this paper the crop water stress is evaluated with three different indices: (i) the Relative Soil Moisture Index [RSMI] resulting from agrometeorological model simulations, (ii) the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, [NDVI] applied on S10 SPOT-VGT imagery, (iii) the Normalized Difference Water Index, [NDWI] applied on S10 SPOT-VGT imagery. The RSMI is one of the outputs of the Belgian Crop Growth Monitoring System. It indicates the soil water availability for crops. Crop water stress is assumed when soil water availability is lower than the crop potential evapotranspiration. One of the potential applications for drought monitoring is the calculation of the number of days with a crop water stress during the growing season or more precisely during the “moisture-sensitive period” of the crop. The two others (well-known) indices are derived from low resolution satellite imagery. Complete time series of S10 SPOT-VGT NDVI and NDWI data - i.e. from April 1998 onwards – have been acquired for the research. Using spatial information on land-uses in Belgium, a simple unmixing method is implemented to partly reduce the problem of mixed values occurring inevitably in 1x1km² pixels. Only the most agricultural pixels are considered for the analysis. The heat wave occurred during the summer 2003 has been chosen as a study case for the comparison. This summer was particularly hot, dry and sunny with the highest averaged temperature ever recorded from June to August in Uccle-Belgium. Many human activities were affected by this particular climatic condition, among which agriculture. In order to make the comparison possible, a standardization of the outputs of the 3 indexes is realised, taking into account the times series of each indexes. Moreover all the outputs are aggregated at municipality level. [less ▲]

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See detailBulletin agrométéorologique - Août 2006
Tychon, Bernard ULg; Ozer, Pierre ULg; De Longueville, Florence et al

in Bulletin Agrométéorologique (2006), 5(5),

L’année 2006 restera dans les annales comme étant une année exceptionnelle au niveau météorologique tant par son printemps froid que par son mois de juillet très sec et son mois d’août particulièrement ... [more ▼]

L’année 2006 restera dans les annales comme étant une année exceptionnelle au niveau météorologique tant par son printemps froid que par son mois de juillet très sec et son mois d’août particulièrement pluvieux. Ces conditions exceptionnelles rendent très délicates les prévisions de rendement. Il faut signaler que les rendements estimés sont ceux sur pieds et ils ne prennent pas en considération les pertes dues aux mauvaises conditions de récolte. Les rendements prévus pour les principales cultures de printemps restent très proches des moyennes calculées sur les 5 dernières années. [less ▲]

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See detailPour 80 milliards de dollars de catastrophes naturelles
Ozer, Pierre ULg; De Longueville, Florence

Article for general public (2006)

Début 2006, nous y sommes. Les sociétés de réassurances, la «Swiss Re» et la «Munich Re» en fer de lance, ont bouclé leurs comptes. Et l'heure est grave: les catastrophes naturelles de 2005 leur auront ... [more ▼]

Début 2006, nous y sommes. Les sociétés de réassurances, la «Swiss Re» et la «Munich Re» en fer de lance, ont bouclé leurs comptes. Et l'heure est grave: les catastrophes naturelles de 2005 leur auront coûté plus de 80 milliards de dollars. Record battu, non, pulvérisé, comme l'effet d'une bombe à fragmentation américaine tombée malencontreusement sur un hôpital irakien ou, moins polémique, comme un séisme qui balaye toute une génération d'écoliers au Cachemire lors d'un tremblement de terre, pourtant attendu, faute de constructions parasismiques... [...] [less ▲]

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