Use cases

Example 1: Transboundary management
Example1Skadarsko_a Monitoring and establishment of a trans-boundary Ramsar site & Biosphere Reserve.Policy context

  • Joint Strategic Action Plan
  • Big Win 2 (Dinaric Arc)
  • Ramsar Convention
  • Water Framework Directive


  • Public Enterprise National Parks of Montenegro
  • National Agency of Protected Areas of Albania

Information needs & SWOS products

  • Detect seasonally flooded areas and river fragmentation
  • Detect potential wetland areas
  • Assess water quality


(Skadarsko Jezero/Liqeni i Shkodrës, Montenegro/ Albania)(Source of the background image ESRI World Imagery, SPOT) (Photo: UMA)


The example shows different seasonal wetland and water quality conditions of Lake Skadar as observed by Sentinel-2 as false color composite: RGB 8-3-2.

Example 2: Delineation and Restoration
 Example2Fuente_a Define restoration measures in management plans and set priorities to restore and promote the use of green infrastructure. Define compensatory measures for Natura 2000 sites.Policy context

  • EU Biodiversity Strategy 2020 (2011)
  • Habitat Directive (1992)
  • Andalusian Wetland Plan (2002)
  • Local Management Plan (2013)


  • Natural Reserve “Laguna Fuente de Piedra”
  • Andalusian Environmental Information Network
  • Regional Ministry for Environment

Information needs & SWOS products

  • Detect seasonally flooded areas
  • Detect elevated soil moisture areas
  • Detected potential wetland areas

(Fuente de Piedra, Spain) (Photo: UMA)


The image pair of a spring and late summer Sentinel-2 observation shows the different water level conditions of the wetland (Sentinel-2 false color composite: RGB 8-3-2).

Example 3: Ecosystem Service Assessment
Example3Greece_a Mapping tree cover densities as ecosystem service indicator for flood protection.Policy context

  • National Biodiversity Law: National Park
  • National Park EU Habitat Directive: Natura 2000
  • Ramsar Convention: Rasmar site


  • Management Body of the Ramsar site

Information needs & SWOS products

  • Land Use/Land Cover and Changes
  • Ramsar types
  • MAES typology
  • Surface water dynamics
  • Wetland Inventory / Delineation
  • Ramsar and MWO Indicators

(National Park in Eastern Makedonia and Thrace, Greece)

(Photo: Ekby)

(Maps of different tree cover densities support the restoration management for flood protection in the national park.)


The image pair shows a spring and late summer image of the delta as observed by Sentinel-2 (false color composite: RGB 8-3-2). different phenological stages of the protected area and the agricultural fields are clearly visible.

Example 4: Hydrological & vegetation dynamics monitoring in semi-arid ecosystems

The Niger River is the lifeline for large parts of the Sahelian region, crossing through arid areas in Mali and Niger. Each year it floods in the vast Inner Niger Delta in Mali, thereby providing fisheries and water for agriculture and household use, on which some 1.5mln people depend. The water from the Niger and Bani Rivers cause the essential annual flooding of Mali’s Inner Niger Delta, filling its many floodplains, swamps, marshes and smaller lakes. Some 1.5 mln people depend on the delta for its fish, their agriculture, transport and sanitation. Millions of waterbirds make their yearly migration as far as from Europe and the Arctic to feed and breed in the Inner Niger Delta. Unfortunately, cooperation over fishing, grazing livestock and agriculture between different ethnic groups is breaking down and disputes between herders and farmers are increasing, as flooding in the delta has receded due to upstream offtakes. The example shows ecosystem conditions in terms of inundation and vegetation acitvity ovserved by Sentinel-2 in the dry season and the rainy season in a false color visualitzation: RGB 11 – 8A – 2.