Applications of Remote Sensing and Geographic Information System in Watershed Management

Essay by surajkumar March 2005

download word file, 12 pages 5.0


Remote sensing and GIS are playing a rapidly increasing role in the filed of hydrology and water resources planning and development. Remote Sensing and GIS with the integration of socio-economic data is very useful for watershed planning and management. Geographic Information System (GIS) is an efficient CAD technique, spatial data analyst and effective database management tool. These systems are exclusively designed to store information about the location, topology and attributes of spatially referenced objects such as rivers, wells, wetlands and wastelands, land features, subsurface features etc. GIS can support many database queries tied to spatially referenced objects and their associated attributes. They also possess specialized spatial analysis functions such as overlay of thematic layers and buffer zone generation around objects, which are the main requirements of watershed planning and management. The water resources management has proved to be a fertile field for GIS tool, as it requires analysis of spatial data for its planning and development.

Hydrologic models can serve as valuable tools in water resources planning and management and their results can be used to assess impacts of natural and man-made changes and to evaluate management strategies. The quality and accuracy of these models can he enhanced significantly by drainage basins within the modelling process using GIS. Nowadays researches emphasize on watershed -based water resources planning and development for successful management practices. This paper gives an overview of applications of remote sensing and GIS in watershed management.


Watershed is a Hydrologic unit. Nowadays watershed based approach of water resources planning, development and management is proved to be important in

Hydrological studies. Efficient management of any resource requires a balance sheet that needs to be maintained within a specified boundary. Watershed exhibits a well-defined hydrological boundary unlike area approach ( a village) and has...