© Enrico Giro
The best area for the application of soil-bioengineering works and for the creation of an active participatory process in the lagoon of Venice is represented by the Burano, Mazzorbo and Torcello Islands, and Palude dei Laghi (Laghi wetland); the area is located between River Dese estuary, the group of islands that lie north of Mazzorbo, and the mudflats area in front of Tesséra airport. This is one of the most natural areas of the Venice Lagoon, with a salinity gradient that allows the development of different plant associations, from halophilic species to reeds. The Northern Lagoon is a site recognized by the European Community for the conservation of priority species and habitats, under the Birds and Habitats Directives and the Natura 2000 network (Natura 2000 codes: Northern Lagoon of Venice, SCI - Site of Community Importance IT3250031; Lagoon of Venice, SPA - Special Protection Area IT3250046).
Visit the interactive map about Vimine Project into Atlante della laguna portal.
This area is the most suitable for a variety of factors, among which: the presence of all major factors determining soil erosion (waves generated by boat traffic and wind, tidal exposure, etc.), the past involvement of this same area in previous projects for salt marshes protection, and the presence of island communities and local authorities which can foster and take part in the participation processes which are fundamental in all project phases.
The area chosen is the most hydraulically and biologically peripheral and isolated part of the Venice Lagoon. The presence of unique habitats for the reproduction and growth of valuable fish species has, in the past, ensured the life of local fishing communities and allowed their settlement in the islands of the lagoon. This area also has the important function to act as a "buffer zone" that can break down pollutants coming from the inland, and reduce, with its particular geomorphology, the strength of tidal currents. Although these areas are currently subject to a diffuse, intense and constant stress erosion, significant actions for the prevention and reduction of these process are missing. These salt marshes are more and more, widely and intensely, subject to erosion, resulting in the fragmentation of their structure. The degradation of this environmental system acts on the whole series of complex relationships that govern life in the salt marshes ecosystem negatively affecting human activities like fishing and other types of human uses of the landscape.