Site Suitability Analysis for In Situ Rainwater Harvesting Structures Using Remote Sensing and GIS in Sheikan Locality, Sudan

Ibrahim Ahmed, Elena Bresci, Mekki A. Omer


The study was conducted in Sheikan locality in 2017 to identify appropriate sites for Rainwater Harvesting (RWH). A systematic identification of the appropriate sites for different RWH structures may contribute to a better success of crop production in such areas. One approach used to adapt to climate change is in situ water harvesting for improved crop yields in Sheikan locality, Sudan. The main objective of this study was to determine the suitable sites for in situ water harvesting structures in the face of climate change through the use of GIS and Remote Sensing techniques in Algabal and Wad Albaga areas of Sheikan locality. A GIS based model has been developed to generate suitability maps for In-situ RWH using multi criteria evaluation. Five suitability criteria (soil texture, runoff depth, rainfall surplus, land cover, and slope) were identified for in situ RWH and for each criterion, five suitability levels were chosen (Excellent, Good, Moderate, Poor, and Unsuitable). Weights were assigned to the criteria based on their relative importance for RWH using an analytical hierarchy process (AHP).Using QGIS and ArcGIS software, all criterion maps and suitability map of the study area were prepared. Consequently, from the obtained suitability map Wad Albaga location (semi-circular bunds) falls in good portion (844 km2) which represents 46.04%,whereas Algabal location (terraces bunds) lies in themoderate class (341 km2) with 18.6%.However, Algabal location was considered as moderate site which was attributed to the soil texture which was sandy clay soil and was ranked as the second most important class compared to Wad Albaga location which was sandy clay loam soil. The obtained suitability map facilitates the identification of sites where in situ RWH structures can be realized. The study concluded that identifying suitable sites using GIS is cost-effective and time-saving method to discover the most appropriate sites for RWH.


Rainwater Harvesting;GIS; North Kordofan; Sudan

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