Actions on the Volvic drainage basin

Type 1 Actions: Optimising the innovation and transferability potential of the SEMEAU project
  • Make an inventory of knowledge of hydrodynamic and hydro chemical modelling of bodies of water : the key elements of the model will be identified in order to create added value to the knowledge of how surface and underground bodies of water behave hydro dynamically and hydro chemically in relation to ground use.
  • To organise exchanges within a specialist group on how the model can be used and developed. A national and international specialist group with the necessary and additional expertise will be set up and regularly consulted, for purposes of relevant criticism as the tool is constructed.
Type 2 Actions: Realising the specialist SEMEAU system and preparing for its appropriation by end users
  • Constructing the SEMEAU specialist system on the experimental basis of the Volvic drainage basin (impluvium). This system will incorporate various cascade models centred on a 3D digital and mathematical aquifer model. Associated elements will provide ground use interfaces, surface and ground water, and will include a section on players at the local level. Four stages in the modelling are planned:
-         Qualitative and quantitative modelling of the aquifer and low level perturbations.
-         Modelling including ground use and interactions with the aquifer by targeting the water / forest interface.
-         Modelling potentials for modification to practice by players at the local level by taking into account the degree of technical and economic acceptability of relevant measures.
-         Perfecting overall modelling enabling the manager of a water body to predict development of aquifer conditions (as a function of various scenarios in terms of ground use) and at the same time of various possibilities for action (application of programme for development measures).
  • Developing a forest section for SEMEAU and illustrating it with a prospective impact survey. The water / forest interface will be included in the model by taking into account the following types of impact:
-         nitrate and phosphate transfers linked to forest cover (including planting of arboreal hedges)
-         diffuse or accidental pollution risks from phytosanitary treatments (treatment of wood or vegetation) or from hydrocarbons (transport of wood from forest to road, transport means within forests)
-         risk of pollution by turbidity and risks of physical deterioration of sensitive aquatic environments (transport of wood from forest to road, transport means within forests)
-         long term risks of alterations to mineralisation conditions (acidification linked to existing forest species, impact of build up of atmospheric deposits)
-         long term risks of changes to quantitative water balance in particular (interception / evaporation and storage in the ground / root systems dependant on woodland species)
This action will also take into account a prospective section on the impact of climate change on forest cover and the consequences for water resources.
  • Finalising the tool and precising possibilities for application at other sites. Once the model has been tested and scaled for the Volvic aquifer, a transfer study will be carried out including an advantages / disadvantages type evaluation on how the the method could be adapted to other sites. The action will terminate with drawing up a user guide for the SEMEAU model for use at other sites.
Type 3 Actions: Optimising the adaptability of the SEMEAU tool through a demonstration experimentation panel on management of the environment
  • Defining an adaptation strategy for agricultural and forest activities with highest risk of impacting on the quality of ground water. During this stage there will be concrete experimentation on the impacts of ground use on ground water. At the Volvic site, by taking into account the subsurface water body and the Bedat, the preventive campaigns applied on agricultural and urban areas will be extended to forest cover. This stage will include drawing up of a forest practice guide devoted to the conservation of water resources. Additional actions will be carried out with the goal of meeting the interests of agricultural and forest players at the local level (diagram of forest services and action programme for agricultural activity). This action will end with the preparation and distribution of a guide to forest practice devoted to conservation of water resources.
Type 4 Actions: Modelling possibilities for adaptation of practice of players at the local level
  • Carrying out an econometric analysis on the relevance of the preventive approach to conservation of water resources. The additional costs of forest management caused by practice aimed at protecting water resources will be assessed, and compared with the economic advantages linked to risk prevention.
  • Carrying out a demonstration pilot scheme for mobilising private woodland owners for conservation of water resources. A pilot scheme for controlling activities in the light of the challenge to water resources conservation will be carried out with a group of owners of forest land on privately owned and sectional woodlands in the drainage basin (impluvium). This scheme will be accompanied by setting up a “marking exercise”, a forest management educational / awareness tool which operates by hypothetical marking of trees for preservation or felling, followed by analysis of the impact on the development of the forest and the consequences for risks to water resources.
Type 5 Actions: Informing on water conservation and communicating results of the project for promoting their use
  • Design and deployment of information tools on the progress of the project and its results. Information boards will be set up at the three project sites. On the SEMEAU web site you can consult the main project material and have access to other sites with information on the subject of potable water conservation. Coverage of the project will also be supported by press contacts and articles in professional magazines concerned with water and forests.
  • Organisation of an international symposium for promoting use of the SEMEAU tool.
Type 6 Actions: Managing the project, keeping the European Commission informed and preparing project follow up
  • Managing implementation and monitoring of the project and drawing up of a « post-Life programme ». Management of the project includes planning and management of actions, organising feedback and editing for sending to the European Community. Progressive evaluation of the tool in terms of quality and performance will be required in order to validate a system which complies with the expectations of future users. A post Life action plan covering at least 2012-2015 will be designed, so that continuity of the communication campaign for the SEMEAU tool can be ensured. The advantages, limits and possibilities for improving the tool will be analysed for purposes of presenting an action plan for its widest possible use.