The National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) has announced that it will implement space technology techniques to boost Nigeria’s agricultural production.
This was disclosed by Dr. Rakiya Babamaaji, the Head, Natural Resources Management Division of NASRDA, on Monday at Abuja in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
The NASRDA boss stated that the technology could be deployed into agriculture through the application of Geospatial technology that involved Remote Sensing and Geographic Information System application, citing geospatial technology used to map and monitor the location of natural resources, take inventory of vegetation and other related resources.
NASRDA also added that it commenced a Space-Based Smart Agriculture for Food Security in Nigeria, in May 2021.
What the NASRDA boss said
Rakiya Babamaaji said, “We are trying to use space technology in agriculture and we have a programme called Space Base Smart Agriculture for Food Security in Nigeria which will address food availability.
“Under the programme, there is the Crop Watch project, a platform used to monitor agricultural activities across the country using geospatial technology.
“Under this project, we are going to gather all the spatial data available with restrictions to agriculture, so that farmers can know what is happening in their farms, from the cropping to monitoring the farmland.
“The project will provide the farmers with the climate data, letting them know when to plant when to apply fertilizer, different soil types in terms of fertility,’’ she said.
She added that NASRDA aims to achieve this objective by engaging farmers on their phones, use of jingles in the radio which could possibly be transmitted in the three major languages and English to reach rural farmers, plans to work with stakeholders including the China Academy of Science and China Remote Sensing Centre as technical partners towards achieving the Crop Watch project.
What you should know
Recall Nairametrics reported last month that Nigeria’s agricultural sector grew by 1.3% (year-on-year) in real terms in the second quarter of 2021, a decrease compared to 1.58% recorded in the same period of 2020, and a decrease of -0.97% points from the Q1 2021 which recorded a growth rate of 2.28%.