Local citizens work with scientists to tackle challenges for water management in Vipava
Climate change and other global developments are expected to affect the Vipava river basin. Local citizens are now working together with scientists to identify the main challenges ahead for the management of water resources, as well as potential solutions to adapt to changing future conditions.
Scientists from the Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia (IZVRS) are involved in the BeWater project and have organised several workshops to discuss water management in the context of global change for the Vipava river basin. Participants of these workshops shared an interest in the basin. In a first workshop, the participants identified challenges related to water management and discussed options to deal with these challenges. In a second workshop, these options were refined and evaluated.
During these workshops, participants highlighted water availability, flood risk reduction and appropriate water quality as the most pressing challenges for the Vipava basin. As a result of the discussions, the participants suggested 20 water management options. Important options include the reconstruction of the Vogršček water reservoir, the construction of new irrigation systems and wet and dry reservoirs, as well as awareness campaigns. This week, on 12 October, regional Chamber of Craft and Small Business in Ajdovščina will host a next event, during which the final set of water management options will be presented and discussed.
“From the beginning of the project we gained a lot of new insights from stakeholders through participation process and we are very keen to continue mutual addressing water related topics in Vipava river basin.” says Dr. Aleksandra Krivograd Klemenčič researcher and coordinator of the Vipava case study in the BeWater project.
These challenges and water management options that have been identified will form the basis for an adaptation plan for the Vipava river basin. This plan will be elaborated during the next phase in the BeWater project.
Similar processes are carried out in three other river basins in the Mediterranean area, located in Cyprus, Spain and Tunisia. The four river basins cover different environmental and socio-economic settings within the Mediterranean area.
The BeWater Project receives funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration. The project aims to develop River Basin Adaptation plans in the Mediterranean through citizen participation.