Experts from the Czech University of Life Sciences are working to create a landscape with elements to ensure that the land can withstand drought and floods. If it proves successful, the project should serve as a model for areas elsewhere in the Czech Republic and Europe.
The university chose to transform a locality in Lany, near Prague, so as to make it resistant to the negative effects of droughts and floods, which may become increasingly frequent in the future. The “smart landscape” covers an area of about 500 hectares and it was selected for the local weather conditions – a dry area with a minimum of precipitation - which simulates conditions that meteorologists say will be common to most of the Czech Republic after 2030.
The transformation of the Amálie locality –to be undertaken in the course of the next three years -will include the introduction of wetlands, ponds and irrigation systems, combined with modern technologies.
According to the university’s rector Petr Sklenička, who is also chief coordinator of its Center for Water, Soil and Landscape Management, the aim of the project is to gradually get the land to withstand the negative effects of climate change. In other words, the elements introduced should help the landscape to survive periods of extreme drought as well as extreme rainfall in fairly good condition. Economic sustainability is also important, because the changes affected should support, not undermine agricultural production.
For example, experts have created three experimental plots with seedlings and grains to verify that they resist erosion and sufficiently absorb water.
The Amálie locality is a pilot project of the Center for Water, Soil and Landscape Management. Other projects relating to forest landscape and urbanized landscape are expected to follow.