A decision framework is developed for quantifying the economic value of information (VOI) from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite mission for drought monitoring, with a focus on the potential contributions of groundwater storage and soil moisture measurements from the GRACE Data Assimilation (GRACE-DA) System. The study consists of: (a) the development of a conceptual framework to evaluate the socioeconomic value of GRACE-DA as a contributing source of information to drought monitoring; (b) structured listening sessions to understand the needs of stakeholders who are affected by drought monitoring; (c) econometric analysis based on the conceptual framework that characterizes the contribution of GRACE-DA to the US Drought Monitor (USDM) in capturing the effects of drought on the agricultural sector; and (d) a demonstration of how the improved characterization of drought conditions may influence decisions made in a real-world drought disaster assistance program. Results show that GRACE-DA has the potential to lower the uncertainty associated with our understanding of drought, and that this improved understanding has the potential to change policy decisions that lead to tangible societal benefits.
The Value of Remotely Sensed Information: The Case of a GRACE-Enhanced Drought Severity IndexView Journal Article
Richard L. Bernknopf
Richard L. Bernknopf is a a visiting research fellow at RFF and research professor in the Department of Economics at the University of New Mexico. His research focuses on the demonstration of the economic value of earth observation and the translation of
Fellow and VALUABLES Consortium Director
Molly K. Macauley
Senior Research Associate and GIS Research Coordinator
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Press Release — Dec 2, 2020
Who Should Pay to Remove Our Nation’s Aging Dams?
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Media Highlight — Nov 23, 2020
Coastal Farmers Being Driven Off Their Lands as Salt Poisons the Soil
A story by the University of Maryland's Howard Center for Investigative Journalism details work by RFF Senior Fellow Rebecca Epanchin-Niell.