Semeau Life Project

The SEMEAU Project is led by the Volvic Mineral Water Society (DANONE Waters)

The SEMEAU Project, led by the Volvic Mineral Water Society (DANONE Waters), the SITHERE of Vals les Bains and Saint Etienne City, is funded in pursuance of the Life+ Environment programme.

 The LIFE Program

The European Water Framework Directive (WFD), promulgated on 23rd October 2000, lays down a framework for a community policy relating to water matters.

It puts the priority on environmental protection with stress on preventing deterioration of the quality of water and even restoring this quality.It thus focuses on achieving the target of good chemical and ecological status of surface and groundwater bodies including coastal waters by 2015.

Within the scope of the implementation of the European policy related to the protection of water resources, the LIFE+ Environment financial instrument backs environmental-orientated innovative and demonstrative experiments

The SEMEAU Project

The SEMEAU project meets with a current day environmental issue: "How to define, test and apply assessment programmes/measures designed to ensure protection of the quality of water resources" or, when required, restoring good ecological status. 

This relates to developing a water body modelling tool on the protected pilot site of the Volvic impluvium. Once tweaked for this hydrosystem, the tool could be rolled out to other sites in order to simulate their functioning and develop or even optimise bespoke assessment programmes.

The SEMEAU project has following key objectives:

  • To develop a surface and groundwater body modelling tool, at the scale of the catchment which represents the relevant scale in terms of water resource management and protection. This tool will essentially be built on the experimental base of the catchment (impluvium) of Volvic.
  • To define, in liaison with the local stakeholders, management scenarios of the areas concerned, integrating water resource protection and local economic development both in the current climate conditions as well as those prevailing in the future incorporating climate change impacts.
  • To conduct a set of demonstrative pilot actions relating forest management with water resource protection.

The SEMEAU project will include several types of demonstrative actions:

  • On the Volvic site: definition of an adaptation strategy of the agricultural and forestry activities and raising awareness among private forest owners in terms of water resource protection 
  • On the Saint-Etienne site: drawing up a strategy for trapping agricultural phosphates
  • On the Vals-les-Bains site: upgrading a traditional hydraulic system and developing a nature trail.

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