The guide aims to provide a harmonized methodological approach to the collection, processing, and analysis of data relative to flora andvegetation (other Guides cover the other components of bio-physical systems).The essential aim of the guide is to set out the joint approaches to zoning, sampling,and measurement of parameters that were chosen within the ROSELT/OSS frame-work. It also addresses the principle methods used to analyze results, covering diverse activities from the development and measurement of new indicators to thecalculation and interpretation of indexes. In the second part of this document, thecontents of the following chapters will be logically laid out:– zoning and sampling of space (Chapter I);– evaluation and monitoring of vegetation, surface states, and resources (Chapter II); – evaluation and monitoring of biodiversity at diverse spatial levels(Chapter III);– evaluation and monitoring of the ecological diversity of landscapes(Chapter IV).
The BRICKS project has been designed to facilitate the fulἀllment of these needs. In fact, the project provides a regional platform to spur exchanges with a view to conducting common actions among the 12 Sahel and West African countries of the SAWAP program. The common objective is to improve countries access to best practices and monitoring information in terms of sustainable land use and management in SAWAP portfolio.
Elaborated within the framework of the BRICKS project, the present guide represents a common core for the implementation of the monitoring and evautaion system of the SAWAP portfolio. It aims to consolidate and support the different monitoring and evaluation systems of the national projects.
The Sahara and Sahel Observatory (OSS) is a Tunis-based international intergovernmental organization created in 1992.
OSS specializes in environmental monitoring and natural resources management and operates in Africa’s Sahel-Sahara region. The main themes around which is structured the OSS work reflectthe major challenges faced by the region, including: land degradation, drought and impacts of climate change on ecosystems and populations.
The long term ecological surveillance observatories network (Réseau d'observatoires de surveillance écologique à long terme, ROSELT/OSS) of the Sahara and Sahel Observatory (OSS) consists of a cluster of observatories which span circum-Saharan Africa and share a common focus on the issue of desertification. Since its inception, the network has been addressing the challenge of improving the collective knowledge on desertification; a scourge that has complex linkages with the issues of biodiversity and climate change.
Over the last ten years, OSS has put in place standardised protocols of data collection and processing in the circum-Sahara with a view to apprehending the trends characterising the evolution of the ROSELT/OSS observatories’ ecological and socio-economic systems. In this part of Africa, where rainfall decrease is chronic in the Sahel and spreading to North Africa, population growth and land use change—due to overgrazing or the conversion of rangelands into croplands—have adverse impacts on the environment. In addition, sand encroachment constitutes a serious threat to irrigated farmland. Biodiversity is equally affected, as several species face the danger of extinction due to human activities.
In the south of the Sahara, natural resource depletion is often among the causes for migration towards the zones where climate and life conditions are more favourable. This forced displacement is significantly less severe in the north of the Sahara where policies put in place by governments in the sub-region encourage sedentary lifestyles.
Based on the scientific reports of the ROSELT/OSS observatories, this publication provides an overview of the data management systems and the decision-support tools developed across the ROSELT/OSS network. It also highlights difficulties pertaining to environmental surveillance in North and West Africa.