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Adapting to the impacts of Climate Change in the Vipava Valley (LIFE ViVaCCAdapt)
Start date: Jul 1, 2016, End date: Jun 30, 2021 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Background Agriculture is an important element of the regional economy of the Vipava valley. However, agricultural production has been substantially affected by climate change in the past decades, with higher temperatures, decreased precipitation, increased solar radiation and increased drought intensity all apparent. In particular, there has been an increase in drought intensity since 1990, which is likely to increase even further in the coming years, entailing substantial costs and damage. The effects of climate change are unlikely to be avoided, so it is important to implement appropriate measures of mitigation and adaptation to avoid a substantial negative effect on agricultural production and the economy of the region. Objectives The principal objective of the LIFE ViVaCCAdapt project is to develop a comprehensive strategy for climate change adaptation, taking into account the specificities of the Vipava valley region. The specific objectives of the project are as follows: To define a set of strategic actions to adapt to climate change using a holistic approach that involves collaboration with experts in a number of different sectors, including agriculture, forestry, hydrology, tourism and urban planning. The project will take into consideration expert assessments of potential environmental problems triggered by proposed agricultural measures; To establish a pilot decision-support system (DSS) for irrigation, in order to rationalise water consumption in accordance with the requirements of the Water Framework Directive; and To design a demonstration centre to plant green wind breaks, in order to show their impact on the maintenance of soil quality and biodiversity and to increase their use. Expected results: The project expects to achieve the following results: Draft a comprehensive strategy for adapting to climate change impacts in the Vipava valley, through defining climate change scenarios, best agronomic practices to better cope against climate change and climate change governance models; Create a pilot DSS for irrigation for the Vipava valley for all kind of crops (e.g. grapes, fruits, vegetables) on soils with different water retention capacity; Reduce water consumption for irrigation, through use of the DSS, by 46 875 m3/yr during the project and 1 250 000 m3/yr within three to five years of the end of the project; Reduce CO2 emissions by 4 tonnes/yr during the project and 106 tonnes/yr within three to five years of the end of the project; Reduce energy consumption by 7 813 kWh/yr during the project and 68 750 kWh/yr within three to five years of the end of the project; Create a demonstration centre with approximately 200 m of different green wind breaks in order to prove that formation of wind protection zones in areas with strong winds is essential; Involve up to 30 farmers in the project, increasing their awareness of their water and carbon footprint; and The project beneficiary and partners will join at least five new thematic networks.
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