Water crisis

Periods of very low rainfall have been recorded over the last few years, bringing about emergency water situations in a good part of the domestic territory.

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A meteorological-climatic situation characterized by a generalized reduction in rainfall has been created over the last few decades. Prolonged periods of low rainfall have in particular been registered over the last few years, causing situations of water emergency in the greater part of the domestic territory, likewise aggravating situations already in a state of emergency.

It should be mentioned that the inadequacy of the waterworks, which in Italy lose about 27% of their water, reaching peaks of 40%, is one of the major factors contributing towards the occurrence of water crisis.

Emergencies.The worst water emergencies in Italy in recent times were recorded in the summer of 2002 (particularly in the central-southern regions) and in the summers of 2003 and 2006 (particularly in the northern regions).
Under these circumstances the lack of water created great handicaps not only in the civil sector but also for farming and industry.
The civil protection Department took action, in agreement with the competent Ministries and Regions involved, upon the declaration of state of emergency by the cabinet and through ordinances granting the Regional presidents, nominated Extraordinary Commissioners, with the powers and means required to deal with the emergency in the water supply sector and integrated waterworks service.
During the summer of 2003 water crisis involving the entire Po Basin, with the idea of preventing further emergency situations and using the ordinary instruments put at disposal by the legislation in force, the Civil Protection Department acted as the promoter to an agreement stipulated with the Basin Authority, the Valle D’Aosta, Piedmont, Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia-Romagna Regions, the Inter-regional River Po Agency (AIPO), the National Grid Distribution Operator (GRTN), Consortia regulating lakes, the National Reclamation, Irrigation and Improved Land Association (ANBI) and power producing companies located in the basin.

Prevention. In order to prevent the water crisis from becoming worse, it would be appropriate to adopt a series of measures, also individual, to conserve and manage the national water heritage in the most appropriate manner.
Such measures consist in a cautious, rational management of the aquifers, reduced consumption, water pipes repaired or upgraded, use of dual supply and distribution networks, that is using pure water for potable purposes and purified water for compatible usage.