Innovation in support of tradition to counter climate change in the UNESCO Site
Project approved and financed by MIBACT – Law 77/2006 “Special measures fot the protection and use of Italian sites of cultural, landscape and environmental interest, included in the World Heritage List, placed under the protection of UNESCO”, financial year 2019
The vineyards of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato are an exceptional example of man’s interaction with his natural environment. Following a long a and slow evolution of winemaking expertise, the best possible adaptation of vines to soils with specific soils and climatic components has been achieved, which in itself is linked to oenological competence, thus becoming an international reference point. The Vineyard Landscape also expresses great aesthetic qualities, transforming it into an archetype of European vineyards.
The project aims to deepen the theme of the impacts and vulnerabilities to climate change of the territory of the UNESCO Site of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato Vineyard Landscapes and create a proposal of adaptation strategies that allow the maintenance of the value of the area under study according to two linked and interdependent aspects: the protection of the value of the UNESCO site from extreme climatic and environmental events and the active participation of citizens in the increasingly emerging issue.
This is because participation has always been one of the key elements of a policy of change, especially when it comes to environmental issues that then also affect the economy and tourism of a territory.
The territory under study, in recent years, has been increasingly affected by extreme natural events that have damaged both the inhabited areas and the wine-growing crops.
The objective of the activity is to define a knowledge base of the territory of the UNESCO Site in such a way as to understand its characteristics and what may be its weaknesses in climatic terms: geomorphological analysis, analysis of the agro-cultural system and use soil, alalysis of settlement systems and planning tools in force. This first part will be accompanied by an analysis of the main climatic dynamics affecting the site, taking into consideration the aspects that affect it the most. In detail, the trends in recent decades of the main atmospheric events that can cause damage to the wine heritage can be studied: rainfall and temperatures in the first place.
In order to understand this phenomenon, and its implications, an on-desk activity will be carried out, analyzing various sources, starting from the official ones, and involving the main research institutes at the territorial level and on the issues in question, including, by way of example but not limited to it, ARPA Piemonte – Regional Meteorological Service, UNITO – Agricultural Sciences Department, Study Center for Rural Development of the Hill, LINKS Foundation.
The activity can also be carried out on the field, through the collection of data by stakeholders active in the area, to provide a more representative picture of the reference reality.
Starting from the analysis made in this first step, the main environmental risks for the territory will be assessed with a coherent and systematic path and consequently the probable vulnerabilities in terms of sensitivity and exposure to risk will be assessed. Then the main transformational impacts on the values, attributes, authenticity and integrity of the world heritage that represent the Langhe-Roero and Monferrato site will emerge.
The best practices in the field of solutions (technological or management related) that aim to make wineries – and therefore the Site – resilient to climate change will also be researched and analyzed.
In light of the results obtained, the activity will conclude with the drafting of a first proposal of concrete strategies and actions that citizens and public bodies (municipalities) could put in place to tackle climate change.