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VietSCO at the heart of France-Vietnam cooperation

Published on 20/07/2022
Accepted as SCO project in 2020, the VIETSCO project is doing double duty with, on the one hand, a restitution workshop held in Hanoi on 16 and 17 June and, on the other hand, a dedicated presentation on the occasion of the visit to CNES of a Vietnamese delegation on 11 July 2022.

Led by CNES in partnership with the VNSC (Vietnam National Space Center) since July 2020, the VietSCO (Vietnam Space Climate Observatory) project is at the heart of France-Vietnam cooperation on the use of Earth observation data. The project has two main components: it provides the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) with tools and products for the dynamic monitoring of rice cultivation, a priority issue related to food security and socio-economic development in Vietnam:

  • the Vimesco-Rice component, which focuses on the impact of short- and long-term climate change phenomena (drought, floods, saltwater intrusion) on rice production in the Mekong Delta (the rice granary of Southeast Asia);
  • the VietARRO (Vietnam Agriculture Resilient Recovery Observatory) component dedicated to the impact of typhoons on rice growing.

Phase 1 completed

Phase 1 of this project, funded under the SCO, has resulted in :

  • Creating links with Vietnamese organisations (disaster management centre, Ministry of Agriculture statistics centres, national remote sensing centre, etc.);
  • collecting the need for the observations ;
  • Conducting capacity building actions (training in online radar processing);
  • developing a WebGIS platform making VietSCO products available.

These products were developed in the project using Sentinel-1 radar satellite data by CESBIO and GlobEO. They are complemented by projections for the year 2050 of the rice-growing areas that would be impacted by climate change and human pressure (saltwater intrusion, in particular). The WebGIS platform will thus enable decision-makers to visualise and quantify the loss of rice-growing areas under various climate change and resource exploitation scenarios.

A feedback workshop (VietSCO User Conference) was held in Hanoi on 16 and 17 June 2022, bringing together around fifty participants. The participants were very interested in the results and would like to see a more operational integration of VietSCO products into their internal tools, as this step could not be carried out during phase 1 due to the limited travel during the pandemic. A supplement to phase 1 to strengthen the "transfer of VietSCO tools and products to Vietnamese user organisations" (Disaster Management Centre and National Remote Sensing Centre) is being studied.

Soon a phase 2

Like the users and partners invited to the feedback workshop, the Vietnamese Minister of Science and Technology, during his visit to CNES on 11 July 2022, expressed great interest in continuing the project with a phase 2. In particular, the project could be extended to other topics related to sustainable development objectives and the implementation of the Paris Agreement (monitoring of methane emissions from rice fields, monitoring of forests and mangroves, coastal erosion, etc.), or the use of THR optical images could be integrated. This phase 2 will be the subject of a response to the next call for SCO projects, this autumn.