Fluvial environments have always played a crucial role in human history. The necessity of fertile land and fresh water for agriculture has led populations to settle in floodplains more frequently than in other environments. Floodplains are complex human–water systems in which the mutual interaction between anthropogenic activities and environment affected the landscape development. In this paper, we analyzed the evolution of the Central Po Plain (Italy) during the Medieval period through a multi-proxy record of geomorphological, archaeological and historical data. The collapse of the Western Roman Empire (5th century AD) coincided with a progressive waterlogging of large floodplain areas. The results obtained by this research shed new light on the consequences that Post-Roman land and water management activities had on landscape evolution. In particular, the exploitation of fluvial sediments through flood management practices had the effect of reclaiming the swamps, but also altered the natural geomorphological development of the area. Even so, the Medieval human activities were more in equilibrium with the natural system than with the later Renaissance large-scale land reclamation works that profoundly modified the landscape turning the wetland environment into the arable land visible today. The analysis of fluvial palaeoenvironments and their relation with past human activities can provide valuable indications for planning more sustainable urbanized alluvial landscapes in future

The Impact of Late Holocene Flood Management on the Central Po Plain (Northern Italy) / F. Brandolini, M. Cremaschi. - In: SUSTAINABILITY. - ISSN 2071-1050. - 10:11(2018 Nov). [10.3390/su10113968]

The Impact of Late Holocene Flood Management on the Central Po Plain (Northern Italy)

Brandolini, Filippo;Cremaschi, Mauro
2018-11

Abstract

Fluvial environments have always played a crucial role in human history. The necessity of fertile land and fresh water for agriculture has led populations to settle in floodplains more frequently than in other environments. Floodplains are complex human–water systems in which the mutual interaction between anthropogenic activities and environment affected the landscape development. In this paper, we analyzed the evolution of the Central Po Plain (Italy) during the Medieval period through a multi-proxy record of geomorphological, archaeological and historical data. The collapse of the Western Roman Empire (5th century AD) coincided with a progressive waterlogging of large floodplain areas. The results obtained by this research shed new light on the consequences that Post-Roman land and water management activities had on landscape evolution. In particular, the exploitation of fluvial sediments through flood management practices had the effect of reclaiming the swamps, but also altered the natural geomorphological development of the area. Even so, the Medieval human activities were more in equilibrium with the natural system than with the later Renaissance large-scale land reclamation works that profoundly modified the landscape turning the wetland environment into the arable land visible today. The analysis of fluvial palaeoenvironments and their relation with past human activities can provide valuable indications for planning more sustainable urbanized alluvial landscapes in future
flood management; wetland; land use change; landscape transformation; resilience; late Holocene; medieval age
Settore GEO/04 - Geografia Fisica e Geomorfologia
SUCCESSO-TERRA-Società Umane, Cambiamenti Climatico-ambientali e Sfruttamento/Sostenibilità delle risorse durante l'Olocene medio in Pianura Padana. Il caso delle Terramare
SUSTAINABILITY
Article (author)
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
sustainability-10-03968 (1).pdf

accesso aperto

Descrizione: Articolo Completo
5.06 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri
Pubblicazioni consigliate

Caricamento pubblicazioni consigliate

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/598152
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 7
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 9
social impact