Pecora River Contract
Towards a river contract for the Lower Val di Pecora
During 2019, the Municipality of Gavorrano, as project leader, requested and obtained funding from the Tuscany Region to start a process aimed at establishing the River Contract for the Bassa Val di Pecora in the Province of Grosseto. In addition to the Municipality of Gavorrano, the Municipality of Scarlino, the Municipality of Follonica, the Colline Metallifere Grossetane National Park, the Consorzio di Bonifica 5 Toscana Costa, Venator Italy, the Italian Centre for River Restoration (CIRF), the Circolo Festambiente of Legambiente Association, the AsiniAmo Association, the ASD Amici delle 2 ruote and the Municipality of Massa Marittima have also joined the project. The project envisages, through various steps, the organisation of a participatory process and the definition of an action and monitoring programme, to arrive at the signing of a River Contract for the Pecora River.
THE RIVER CONTRACT is a process of citizen participation, the details of which can be found on the regional portal Open Toscana.
Below are the videos in which the administrators of the four municipalities involved in the participatory process illustrate the River Contract...
What is a River Contract?
A River Contract can be defined as an act of commitment shared by different public and private subjects interested in watercourses (and in the hydrographic systems connected to them, such as water tables, coasts, wetlands, etc.), which – through the identification of a common vision and modalities of work and action – aims at pursuing the environmental requalification and the sustainable socio-economic regeneration of the river system.
From an administrative standpoint, it is a process of negotiated planning and, in line with the planning in force and respecting the specific competences of the various territorial actors, it makes it possible to bring together the different needs that revolve around the river system in a unitary vision, an integrated governance and a coordinated action. The experience of River Contracts was born in France at the beginning of the 1980s and, after a dissemination in the Walloon region of Belgium, was introduced in Italy at the beginning of 2000 with some pilot experiences in Lombardy and, since 2007, in Piedmont.
Today, at the national level, there are numerous cases of contractual decision-making processes at different hydrographic scales (river, lake, water table, river mouth contracts, etc.). Different experiences are maturing also in Tuscany, also after the adhesion in 2014 by the Regional Administration to the National Charter of River Contracts, a document of guidance drawn up in 2010 during the V meeting of the National Group of River Contracts and ratified during the following meeting held in Turin in 2012.
The Ministry of Environment established, in November 2017, the National Observatory of River Contracts, as part of the Creiamo PA Project (“Competences and Networks for Environmental Integration and Improvement of PA Organisations”), funded under the National Operational Programme (NOP) Governance and Institutional Capacity 2014-2020.
The Observatory is a central structure of direction and coordination that meets the need to harmonise the implementation of River Contracts on a local, regional and national scale: it includes representatives of ISPRA, the District Basin Authorities, Regions and experts in the field.