A specific case study is represented by the Grosseto plain (Tuscany, Italy) where the Ombrone river flows and in particular to its lower course. Historical conflicts for water have always existed in this area.
Today the land of the alluvial plain is mainly exploited by farmers for cattle rearing or for agricultural monocultures (wheat, corn, sunflowers, rice). In recent years with a decrease in rainfall of the entire area and an increase in fresh water demand due to the presence of intensive crops and to a growing urbanisation there has been a decrease in the water table levels. This has caused the intrusion of saltwater both in the superficial and deep ground water tables, phenomenon that has also been enhanced by coastal erosion of the area.
Therefore there is a strong conflict between aquaculture, agriculture and cattle breeding that experience a decrease in appropriate water quality and quantity and grazing grounds respectively.
At present there is a proposal by local planners of using depurated waste waters from the city of Grosseto to make up for water deficit on the right hand side of the Ombrone river plain that could be used for agriculture whereas on the left hand side they are discussing on the opportunity of constructing an artificial water basin as reservoir.
Part of the area is protected for its natural value as biodiversity reservoir and residual wetlands.
Detailed presentation of the site (disponibile anche in italiano ) by Partner 2.
Selected references on the site by Partner 2.
Report of the Meeting organised at the study site in May 2006.
"La memoria dell'acqua nella pianura grossetana" (in Italian)
by L. Chelazzi, I. Colombini, M. Fallaci & E. Gagnarli (Partner 2.)