The ongoing climate crisis has also made itself felt in Italy, in fact, 2022 recorded very high temperatures and rainfall of about 50 billion cubic meters of water less than in past years. But even in 2023 the drought is advancing rapidly, especially in the North. In a country like Italy, characterized by a strong link with the land and with agriculture in the history and economy of the territory, an initiative like the Laghetti Plan represents an important turning point for the future of agricultural activities and the protection of the territory.
The Laghetti Plan is an important strategy against drought that aims to create artificial water basins intended to mitigate the effects of climate change on agricultural activities. ANBI (Associazione Nazionale Bonifiche e Irrigazioni MiglioraFondiari), an entity that manages and protects the territory and irrigation water, and Coldiretti (National Confederation of Direct Farmers), an association that represents and assists the agricultural sector, have already presented the Plan in the autumn of 2021. At that time the signs of drought were there, but the real emergency would begin months later, more precisely in the spring of 2022.
The idea behind the Laghetti Plan is to create an integrated system of micro-basins and small reservoirs for the collection of rainwater, to be used in particular in areas affected by drought phenomena. These artificial lakes will improve biodiversity and, above all, provide water for agricultural activities. It is a project for the construction of 10,000 artificial basins throughout Italy, with very low environmental impact, as they do not include concrete works or damming of waterways.
The reservoirs are not only useful for water needs in agriculture, but can also be used as a surface on which to install floating photovoltaic panels or in case of lack of drinking water. Thanks to the use of new technologies and the collaboration between ANBI and Coldiretti, the Laghetti Plan will be able not only to improve the quality of water resources, but also to optimize their distribution to support agricultural activities and the life of rural communities.
ANBI and Coldiretti aim to build 10.000 medium-small reservoirs by 2030 but, for now, the projects that have reached the executive phase, therefore immediately buildable, during the last year were 223. For this first part of the project it has been estimated that 3.2 billion euros will be needed, of which the PNRR (National Recovery and Resilience Plan) has already committed 880 million euros.
G.Re.T.A. system: an ally against hydrogeological risk
The irrigation basins envisaged by the Laghetti Plan constitute a great potential for the territory, but also a risk in terms of hydrogeological instability, if they were subject to filtration phenomena, which could undermine their stability. One of the key elements to ensure the structural stability of works of this kind is, certainly, in addition to the design in a workmanlike manner, the use of monitoring technologies of the same.
One of the most promising technologies for real-time monitoring of the structure of earth basins is G.Re.T.A., a permanent geo-electric monitoring system, which allows you to keep under control the evolution of phenomena taking place within the body of the structure, such as filtration, cavity creation or fractures. The instrument is able to measure changes over time in the resistivity of the subsurface, which is a function of water content or the presence of voids in the ground.
This system is an important ally for the Laghetti Plan, as it can be used to constantly monitor the structural integrity of the earth embankments of irrigation basins, with the aim of minimizing the hydrogeological risk associated with the instability of the structures themselves.
Macfrut Fair: 3-5 May 2023, Rimini
If you are interested in the topic, you can find LSI LASTEM at Macfrut Fair, 3-5 May, Rimini – Expo Centre (Pav. C1, Stand 123), where it will participate in the “Piazza dell’Acqua” initiative organized by ANBI and CER (Canale Emiliano Romagnolo).
Thursday 4th May 2023 h. 9:30-11:00
“INNOVATION FOR WATER AND ENERGY SAVING: PRECISION IRRIGATION, SENSORS AND SUSTAINABILITY”
As part of the communication session dedicated to irrigation, the Laghetti Plan and water saving strategies, LSI LASTEM will show how the G.Re.T.A. system is a fundamental player for the monitoring of irrigation basins, with the aim of guaranteeing the structural integrity of earth infrastructures in real time.