In the new economy, the role of digitization is increasingly present, and procedures, tools and other resources are becoming available in a new era in water management and smart agriculture. In the future agriculture of the Mediterranean region, concepts like “big data”, “Internet of Things” and “cyber-physical systems”, will have to coexist with the physical environments that need to be more sustainable to assure food and quality of life for the population especially regarding water resources. The project will demonstrate that the pool of non-conventional water resources together with conventional water resources of river basins in scarcity or low water quality areas, can increase quantity, quality and efficiency in cost savings and reducing loses where remote sensing communications protocols are implemented.The application of ICT to NCWTT will promote control and information available to all stakeholders thanks to the use of a platform open access. Data will be obtained and elaborated not only from a technological or sanitary point of view, but from an integrated socio-economic perspective, understanding the potentialities of water management for agriculture, and boosting growth and sustainable development in the Mediterranean region.
Objective 1. - To study, adapt and implement technologies for reclaimed water and re-use, already validated in past EU projects in the partners, that will increase water quality and quantity, for knowledge transfer, further development and validation in other environments of the Mediterranean (work packages WP3, WP5). Objective 2.- To develop new sensor and communication protocols for monitoring and control of water distribution systems at wastewater treatment plants providing “new water” to the water cycle and making it more efficient by reducing operational and energy costs, speed up the water cycle, reduce water losses, etc. Objective 3.- To improve agricultural productivity in Mediterranean agrosystems (water scarcity, low quality water, etc.) by minimizing the use of water and fertilizers by optimizing the management of fertigation. Objective 4.- To analyse the potential of agrophotovoltaic applications (APV) with respect to a reduction of irrigation needs through shadowing, PV-based water treatment of low quality water (LQW) to avoid or mitigate soil salinization. Objective 5.- To develop socio-economic studies and to improve water governance in the Mediterranean partners countries. The objective of the studies is to determine what the long range effects of water management may have on local populations, growth, new jobs, talent, new professional specialisation, new businesses and incomes.
The objective of WATERMED 4.0 is to develop and to apply an integrated decision support system based on the Internet of Things, for managing the whole water cycle in agriculture, monitoring water resources (conventional and non -conventional) and water demands including the measure of economic, energy, social and governance factors that influence the water use efficiency in Mediterranean agricultural production areas.
The overall approach of WATERMED4.0 is increasing the efficiency in the management of conventional and non- conventional water resources applied to agriculture from an integral perspective. The new perspective comes from the assumption that technology development, societal engagement, governance and transferring knowledge will be enhanced by the new possibilities of digitalisation and cyber-compyting through an open platform, in a form that best fits the needs of end-users and the associated supply chain, from high waters (water management authorities, water planning organisations, wastewater treatment plants, technology SME’s) to the plot (irrigation communities, farmers and technology SME’s). The expected impacts will be easily monitored all along the water cycle for agriculture, real-time controlled by the Internet of Things and Services, helping to increase quantity and quality of water available for agriculture and to save water and nutrients.
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