Project: Sustainable water storage and distribution in the Mediterranean

Acronym OurMED
Duration 01/06/2023 - 01/06/2026
Project Topic The Mediterranean Region is unique in its human society, natural environment and biodiversity, and climate variability. However, it is experiencing rapid population growth, increasing anthropogenic pressures, and rapid climate change. This is resulting in intensified water demand through increased irrigation and water consumption, severely threatening socio-economic stability and ecosystems integrity. In alignment with the challenge and scope of PRIMA call Topic 1.1.1, OurMED project was designed to emphasize the urgent need for more inclusive water storage and distribution in the Mediterranean region, considering the natural resources and engineered infrastructure over the short and long-term horizons. OurMED is a new vision of fair, balanced and co-designed water-related ecosystems in the Mediterranean region including stakeholder perception and benefiting from technologically-advanced monitoring techniques, smart models prediction, and optimization as well as digitalization capabilities. OurMED intends to develop integrated and holistic water management at various scale, ensuring multi-sectorial requirements and avoiding trade-offs between domestic/industrial water use, food production, and ecosystem needs. OurMED also aims to reinforce short-term (winter/summer) water storage and distribution forecasting and long-term water management. To this end, a group of water experts with multidisciplinary but complementary skills intend to develop and implement tailored and sustainable nature-based water storage and distribution solutions in eight demonstration sites, representative of typical water mismatch problems on both shores of the Mediterranean region. The demonstration sites were carefully selected, representing different climate conditions (arid to temperate climate), water and ecological challenges (soil erosion and sedimentation, water quality deterioration, and groundwater depletion), and different natural and artificial water bodies (lake, reservoirs, rivers, groundwater, and wetlands). OurMED aims to co-design and demonstrate water management pathways and solutions for each demonstration site by creating new long-lasting spaces for social learning among multi-sectoral and interdependent stakeholders, societal actors and scientific researchers. The efficiency and sustainability of stakeholders-suggested mitigation options under different future socio-economic and climate projections will be assessed using environmental and socio-economical indicators. OurMED aims to reinforce scientific-based equitable water management in the Mediterranean region, especially under increasingly pressing future anthropogenic and climate conditions, learning from the impacts of historical extreme events experienced already by the demonstration sites during the last decades. OurMED envisages moving from traditional one sectorial water management relying on a general threshold value and fixed-time horizon to more scientifically-based, multisectoral and case-specific management “Precise Management”, recognizing the specificity of each demo site. To ensure upscaling and replicability of tailored solutions to other countries, the entire Mediterranean basin is considered as a separate demonstration site in OurMED, with particular focus and investigation on essential water-ecosystem variables, systematic monitoring and data sharing, as well as policy examination towards inclusive and sustainable water management and efficient governance at the regional scale. The long-term objective of OurMED project is to establish guidelines and develop demonstrable test cases towards optimum and equitable water management in the Mediterranean region.
Network PRIMA
Call Section 1 – Management of Water 2022

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Bogaziçi University Partner Türkiye
2 Euro-Mediterranean Information System on know-how in the Water sector Partner France
3 Helmholtz - Zentrum fuer Umweltforschung GmbH - UFZ Coordinator Germany
4 Higher School of Engineering of Medjez El Bab Partner Tunisia
5 IDRICA Partner Spain
6 La Tour du Valat Partner France
7 Living Planet Morocco Partner Morocco
8 Patrícia Lourenço Partner Portugal
9 Remote Sensing Solutions GmbH Partner Germany
10 Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature Partner Jordan
11 Technical University of Crete Partner Greece
12 Università di Parma Partner Italy
13 Universitat Politècnica de València Partner Spain
14 University of Naples Federico II Partner Italy
15 University of Sassari Partner Italy