Project actions

The actions planned by the SEMEAU project have three major goals:

• To design and develop the SEMEAU tool in close dialogue with a pilot committee including future users, players at the local level and public authorities responsible for the application of DCE, by calling upon a specialist group. The tool should provide qualitative and quantitative modelling of surface and subterranean water bodies. It should be applicable to hydro systems in average mountainous and hilly environments where forest occupies a large share of the catchment area surface. It will be applicable in particular to sites fore which players at the local level wish to assess the impact of various agricultural and forest area management scenarios on water resources. The tool will be developed on the basis of data relating to the Volvic site and tested on the Saint Etienne and Volvic sites.

• To set up on all three project sites a panel of actions demonstrating concrete possibilities for improving qualitative and quantitative conservation of water resources by means of modifications to management of agricultural and forest environments. These actions will include: carrying out demonstration pilot operations defined by strategies for modifying practice and use of tools for informing and sensibilising wider public opinion.

• Promoting use of SEMEAU methodology by communication and training campaigns at the local, national and European level. Communication about the SEMEAU project will take the form of: an information path providing information on the role of trees and forests in conservation water quality, installation of information boards on experimental sites, design and data population of a web site, publication of articles and organising an international symposium.

Current actions on the three pilot sites are classified into 6 main groups:

Type 1 Actions:
Optimising the innovation and transferability potential of the SEMEAU tool. This group of actions aims at providing an objective basis for both identifying and assessing key innovation points in the SEMEAU modelling method and potential for transferability. In other words, the aim is to answer two questions: « In what ways will the SEMEAU project be useful? » and « Who will it be useful for? ».

Type 2 Actions:
Creating the specialist SEMEAU system and preparing for its appropriation by end users. This second group of actions makes up the technical heart of the project since its goal is to implement, validate and prepare transfer to end users of the specialist SEMEAU system.

Type 3 Actions:
Optimising the adaptability of the SEMEAU tool through a demonstration experimentation panel. The purpose of this third group of action is to maximise the demonstrative potential of the project by targeting concrete experiments for modifying ground use having an impact on potable water resources. This experimentation panel is designed:
- firstly, on the basis of quantitative or qualitative water parameters considered as important for scaling and testing the SEMEAU tool
- secondly, for experimentation on possibilities for modifying the behaviour of local players considered as being strategic for the project.
This modelling of action possibilities will form a demonstration reference for the DCE measuring programmes.

Type 4 Actions:
Modelling possibilities for changing practice of players at the local level. The aim of this fourth group of actions is to respond as effectively as possible to one of the fundamental requirements of the DCE which is to reinforce local participation concerning the challenges posed by water management. The panel of actions selected for the project, at the level of local participation, provides a precise strategy whose aim is to construct a section of the SEMEAU tool for « modelling practice of players at the local level ».

Type 5 Actions:
Informing on water conservation and communicating results of the project for promoting their use. The aim of this fifth group of actions is to set up an effective strategy for communication the results of the project. This strategy is designed on three levels:
- the local level at project sites so that its demonstrative character can be best valorised and so that the public authorities responsible for the DCE should be fully convinced of the tool’s value. The aim is that it should be used for water bodies on which these sites depend and at the same time to promote its use for other sites.
- the national and European level with respect to players in the fields of water, forest and agriculture, using highly targeted communication channels such as specialist publications and above all by organising an international project conclusion symposium.
- the widest level consisting in making information available to the wider public and to all the players having an interest in the project, with in particular the current web site dedicated to the project.

Type 6 Actions:
Managing the project, keeping the European Commission informed and preparing project follow up. The aim of this sixth and final group of actions is to organise and secure the management of the project so as to ensure, firstly, strict respect for obligations undertaken with the European Commission, and secondly, to ensure that the best possible results with respect to the grounding of the project are achieved, namely, implementation and communication of a specialist SEMEAU system, devoted to the application and monitoring of programmes for conserving potable water resources.