Plant diseases and pests have significant impact on the production of crops and are the causes of yield loss in West Africa. Remote sensing technologies are useful tools in detecting pests and diseases over a large area. Currently AGRHYMET, using applications of EO data, acquires spatial distribution information of pest and crop disease over a large area. Based on this information, AGRHYMET advises ECOWAS Member States, regarding the current status of pest and crop diseases in the region.
As a result of close cooperation between the European Commission, the African Regional Economic Communities, the ACP Secretariat, the African Union Commission and EUMETSAT, a succession of projects have been organised to help African countries get better access to Earth observation data. The focus for the initial PUMA project was to provide access to satellite data for weather forecasting.