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A Monitoring System of Sand Mining in Large Rivers and Its Application to the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River, Myanmar

1
Asian School of the Environment and Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551, Singapore
2
Environmental Sciences Program-CIAMB, Federal University of Goiás, Goiânia 74690-900, Brazil
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Achim A. Beylich
Water 2021, 13(17), 2331; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13172331
Received: 8 July 2021 / Revised: 19 August 2021 / Accepted: 19 August 2021 / Published: 25 August 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
Sand mining is one of the major sustainability challenges of the 21st century. Rates of extraction are surpassing sand supply, and ensuing sand starvation is adversely impacting channel-floodplains and deltas. Therefore, quantifying sand mining’s location and extent, through global monitoring and detection, particularly in fluvial systems, is becoming a priority. Sand mining by dredges and barges (extraction of sand and secondarily gravel) in South East Asian rivers, including illegal sand mining, has become rampant, and a monitoring system is not yet in place. Here, we present a high-resolution remote sensing-based mining monitoring system for sand mining in fluvial systems. We used Sentinel-1 mission, a radar component of the Copernicus joint initiative of the European Commission (EC) and the European Space Agency (ESA). The system, tested in the Ayeyarwady, the second largest river in SE Asia, detects sand mining by barges almost in real-time with a satisfactory accuracy level. An additional advantage of the monitoring system is that it does not incur any costs, making it accessible to multiple users, decision-makers, and stakeholders. View Full-Text
Keywords: sand mining; monitoring system; Ayeyarwady River; Myanmar; Southeast Asia sand mining; monitoring system; Ayeyarwady River; Myanmar; Southeast Asia
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gruel, C.R.; Latrubesse, E.M. A Monitoring System of Sand Mining in Large Rivers and Its Application to the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River, Myanmar. Water 2021, 13, 2331. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13172331

AMA Style

Gruel CR, Latrubesse EM. A Monitoring System of Sand Mining in Large Rivers and Its Application to the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River, Myanmar. Water. 2021; 13(17):2331. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13172331

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gruel, Charles R., and Edgardo M. Latrubesse 2021. "A Monitoring System of Sand Mining in Large Rivers and Its Application to the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River, Myanmar" Water 13, no. 17: 2331. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13172331

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