Po River Basin, Italy
The Po river basin is an international watershed, and the largest Italian: its surface extends for about 74 000 km2, of which about 71 000 km2 across the Italian territory, which means a quarter of the entire national territory. The Po river is the main Italian river both for length, 652 km and discharge: the maximum measured discharge has been 10.3 m3/s in Pontelagoscuro, reached during the November 1951 flood event. The Po, whose headwaters are on the northern slope of Monviso in Piedmont, is fed by 141 tributaries along its course.
Po river basin is home to roughly 17 Mln inhabitants, and Lombardy region has the highest regional population density (423 inh/km2). It’s an incredibly various territory: it’s the most industrialized area of Italy and alluvial Po plain is intensely cultivated, with agricultural products of high quality. Transport network and infrastructures are highly developed, beside a natural environment very rich in biodiversity, due to the variations in altitude range and climate given by the Alps and the Apennines, which border respectively northern and southern edges of the Po basin.
Pontelagoscuro is a small town in the Province of Ferrara, directly on the Po river, and it represents the closure of Po hydrographic basin. Province of Ferrara has set a drinking water plant directly on the Po river, which withdraws raw waters from the Po river and groundwater.
This Pontelagoscuro drinking water plant produces about 27 000 000 m3/a of drinking water, distributed in twelve municipalities with a network 2.500 km long. This drinking water plant is one of the very few in Italy equipped with lagoon basins, which, if needed, allow the interruption of withdrawals from the Po and guarantee three days of supply. The drinking water plant treats waters with clariflocculators, ozonation, carbon filtration, plus chlorine addition before entering the distribution network.
This plant has been chosen for monitoring activities carried out by AdbPo in the boDEREC-CE project, supported by the plant manager HERA and by Regional Agency for Prevention, Environment and Energy of Emilia-Romagna, Italy, because of its high technological level and because it withdraws waters collected from the entire basin, being at the closure of the basin, so analysis carried out on raw waters entering the plant are representative of inputs and transport processes for the entire Po basin.
In the plant, samples will be collected in different points of the treatment process, to analyse its efficiency and try to individuate best practices to improve PPCPs removal from drinking waters.
Cluster 1: Surface water
Pilot Action responsible: AdbPo, PP10