Aline Saraiva Okello

PhD Fellow


Ms Aline Maraci Lopes Saraiva Okello graduated on 2 May 2019. Find the link to her thesis here:

Aline Maraci Lopes Saraiva Okello, graduated with distinction from the MSc Programme in Water Science and Engineering, specialisation Hydrology and Water Resources, from IHE Delft Institute for Water Education, Delft, The Netherlands, in April 2010. Her MSc research topic was "Experimental Investigation of Water Fluxes in Irrigated Sugarcane using Environmental Isotopes. A case Study of Mhlume Plantations, Incomati Catchment, Swaziland". The research was carried out under RISKOMAN project (Risk-based operational water management on the Incomati River Basin). This project is currently on-going, with the financing of Water Research Commission of South Africa (WRC) and IHE Delft. Aline has been selected to continue as a PhD researcher for RISKOMAN project.

Aline holds a BSc Honours degree (Licenciatura) in Civil and Transport Engineering (with distinction: 90%), from ISUTC, Maputo, Mozambique, with thesis: Drainage Systems applied to a restricted area of Maputo city. She has been a teacher, researcher and consultant over the past 5 years. She is member of IAEH - the International Association for Environmental Hydrology and Mozambican Council of Engineers.


Bridging the gaps between Hydrology, Land use and Water Management using Tracers and Water recources Modelling in the Incomati Basin


  • Maarten van Eekelen, Wim Bastiaanssen, Caren Jarmain, Brian Jackson, Fanie Ferreira, Pieter van der Zaag, Aline Saraiva Okello, Jan Bosch,Peter Dye, Ernesto Bastidas-Obando, Remco Dost and Wim Luxemburg (2013). A Novel Approach to Estimate Direct and Indirect Water Withdrawals from Satellite Measurements: A Case Study from the Incomati Basin, submitted to Agriculture Ecosystems and Environment Journal.
  • A.M.L. Saraiva Okello, E. Riddell, S. Uhlenbrook, I. Masih, G. Jewitt, P. van der Zaag, S. Lorentz. Isotopic and Hydrochemical River Profile of the Incomati River Basin. Conference proceedings 13th Waternet/WARFSA/GWP-SA Symposium, Johanesburg, South Africa 2012.
  • A.M.L. Saraiva Okello, I. Masih, S. Uhlenbrook, P. van der Zaag, G. Jewitt, E. Riddell. Are observed stream flow records sufficient to understand natural hydrological process heterogeneity in the Incomati River Basin? Paper presented at IHE Delft PhD week 1-5 October 2012, Delft, The Netherlands
  • E.S. Riddell, A.M.L. Saraiva Okello, P.Van der Zaag, G.P.W. Jewitt, S. Uhlenbrook, B. Jackson, T.K. Chetty. Risk-based operational water management through improved hydrological understanding to augment IWRM institutional capacity in the Incomati, Conference proceedings 12th Waternet/WARFSA/GWP-SA Symposium, Maputo, Mozambique, 2011
  • E.S. Riddell, T.K. Chetty, A.M.L. Saraiva Okello, B. Jackson, G.P.W. Jewitt. Report on new sources of catchment information. A Management Tool for the Inkomati Basin with focus on Improved Hydrological Understanding for Risk-based Operational Water Management. Project K5/1935, September 2011.
  • Saraiva A. M. L., Wenninger J. Uhlenbrook S. and Ndlovu L. Experimental investigation of water fluxes in irrigated sugarcane in Swaziland using environmental isotopes, Conference proceedings 11th Waternet/WARFSA/GWP-SA Symposium, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, 2010
  • Saraiva A. M. L., Tilmant A. Uhlenbrook S., Van der Zaag P. Risk-based operational water management for the Incomati River Basin, poster presented at 11th Waternet/WARFSA/GWP-SA Symposium, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, 2010
  • Saraiva A. M. L., Experimental Investigation of Water Fluxes in Irrigated Sugarcane using Environmental Isotopes. A case Study of Mhlume Plantations, Incomati Catchment, Swaziland (IHE Delft MSc Thesis WSE-HWR-10.10), 2010

Other information

Summary of the research:

This research project aims at improving the understanding of hydrological processes of the Incomati river basin to enable better water management. A data-base of time series, maps, satellite images, hydrological studies and water uses of the study area will be developed to support existing decision-support tools. Statistical methods such as correlation, trend and time series analysis will be conducted on rainfall, temperature and runoff, to identify patterns of hydro climatic variability. Land cover and land use changes will also be analysed, based on GIS and satellite images. Intensive field work campaigns using tracer methods, particularly environmental isotopes will be employed to determine flow paths, water sources, residence time of stream flow. Snapshot sampling of river water will be done during low and high flow seasons. Hydrological modelling will be done, using ACRU and/or SWAT model, in order to simulate the basin's hydrology including water resources assessment and their management. Finally, scenarios of different land use and different water management options will be analysed in an integrated fashion.

The expected results of the research will include:

  • a data-base of hydrological and meteorological data, stream flow, geology, soils, land use, water demands and water use for the Incomati river basin;
  • an analysis of hydro-climatic, discharge and land use changes of whole Incomati River Basin;
  • an isotopic profile of rivers of Incomati, main hydrological and dominating runoff generation processes;
  • an improved and updated physically based hydrological model of Incomati.


Funding Source: IHE Delft Partnership Research Fund; Water Research Commission, South Africa

Employer: University of KwaZulu-Natal, SBEEH, South Africa

Project: RISKOMAN project (Risk-based Operational Water Management for the Incomati River Basin).


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