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The Pilot Arno Water Accounts (PAWA) project was recently funded under the Call “Preparatory Action on Development of Prevention Activities to Halt Desertification in Europe” of the Directorate- General for the Environment of the European Commission to promote preventive actions to manage water scarcity and drought phenomena and to meet one of the main goals under European environmental legislation: the effective and sustainable management of water resources. The partners involved in the implementation of the PAWA project (ISPRA, Arno River Basin Authority, SEMIDE/EMWIS) will carry out a pilot initiative in the Arno River Basin, an area severely affected by water scarcity and droughts phenomena and characterized by water withdrawals and land use changes. In the area a large experience about water balance application was already performed, for example in the context of the Water Framework Directive Common Implementation Strategy. Moving from this knowledge, the objective of the project is the definition of water accounting processing based on the UN System of Environmental Economic Accounts for Water, with the final goal to optimize a list of effective measures to face water scarcity phenomena. By the end of project (March 2015) the PAWA partnership aims at preparing physical water stock accounts, using the best available data resulting from field measurements or models, on a monthly step for the period 1999–201. The quality of each dataset will be assessed; tables, maps and graphs will be produced as outputs of the projects in cooperation with local stakeholders and players of the water sector. Furthermore, water accounts will be used to assess the potential impact of various measures related to water resource efficient exploitation in the most vulnerable sub-basins; their tolerability will be tested during workshops with stakeholders. Finally, water efficiency targets for potential future integration into Arno River Basin Management Plan will be identified.
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