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Isotta F.A.,Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss | Frei C.,Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss | Weilguni V.,Bundesministerium fur Land und Forstwirtschaft | Percec Tadic M.,Meteorological and Hydrological Service of Croatia | And 14 more authors.
International Journal of Climatology

In the region of the European Alps, national and regional meteorological services operate rain-gauge networks, which together, constitute one of the densest in situ observation systems in a large-scale high-mountain region. Data from these networks are consistently analyzed, in this study, to develop a pan-Alpine grid dataset and to describe the region's mesoscale precipitation climate, including the occurrence of heavy precipitation and long dry periods. The analyses are based on a collation of high-resolution rain-gauge data from seven Alpine countries, with 5500 measurements per day on average, spanning the period 1971-2008. The dataset is an update of an earlier version with improved data density and more thorough quality control. The grid dataset has a grid spacing of 5 km, daily time resolution, and was constructed with a distance-angular weighting scheme that integrates climatological precipitation-topography relationships. Scales effectively resolved in the dataset are coarser than the grid spacing and vary in time and space, depending on station density. We quantify the uncertainty of the dataset by cross-validation and in relation to topographic complexity, data density and season. Results indicate that grid point estimates are systematically underestimated (overestimated) at large (small) precipitation intensities, when they are interpreted as point estimates. Our climatological analyses highlight interesting variations in indicators of daily precipitation that deviate from the pattern and course of mean precipitation and illustrate the complex role of topography. The daily Alpine precipitation grid dataset was developed as part of the EU funded EURO4M project and is freely available for scientific use. © 2013 Royal Meteorological Society. Source

Billi P.,University of Ferrara | Preciso E.,ARPA Veneto | Salemi E.,University of Ferrara
Zeitschrift fur Geomorphologie

A first aim of this paper is to investigate the existence, if any, and the parameters defining the occurrence conditions of a continuum of rhythmic, transverse roughness elements of gravel-bed rivers such as transverse ribs, step-pools and riffle and pool sequences. The investigation is carried out by the analysis of a large data set consisting of almost all the data available in the literature and unpublished field data measured by the authors on a few rivers in the eastern Alps and the northern Apennines. Open questions about the origin of these bedforms are considered and tested against the data set available. A few equations relating the main geomorphic parameters are obtained. They can be used for river restoration and paleohydrological inference. The jamming factor (ratio between the size of the coarser particle and channel width) is found as a relevant parameter in the development of the bedforms considered. The conditions and the interplays between the jamming factors and others parameters such as bedform wavelength and streambed gradient are considered in order to discriminate the fields of existence of the larger roughness transverse, cyclic elements of gravel bed rivers and to show that transverse ribs, step-pools and riffle and pool sequences are part of a coarse grained bedform continuum. © 2013 Gebr. Borntraeger Verlagsbuchhandlung, Stuttgart, Germany. Source

Alonzo E.,Servizio Igiene Alimenti e Nutrizione | Fardella M.,Servizio Igiene Alimenti e Nutrizione | Strumia C.,Assessorato alla Sanita Regione Piemonte | Martinelli A.,Agenzia Regionale per la Protezione dellAmbiente ARPA Umbria | And 8 more authors.
Annali dell'Istituto Superiore di Sanita

The control of groundwater and surface water quality in relation to the presence of pesticides and their metabolites is a rather complicated task. National and local authorities with the responsibility to guarantee an adequate quality of water cannot rely on international guidelines for monitoring activities. In a national project, forty-three pesticides and pesticide metabolites were selected on the basis of sale, monitoring and physical-chemical data, and investigated from some of the main Italian agricultural areas, susceptible to pesticide contamination. Twelve compounds were found in the tested water samples at levels exceeding the 0.1 μg/L European Union (EU) limit for drinking water (European Directive 98/83/EC). Maximum levels up to 0.62 were determined. Several water samples were characterized by the simultaneous occurrence of pesticides and their metabolites (up to ten). In some samples, the total concentration of pesticides and their metabolites was higher than the EU limit of 0.5 μg/L. Total triazine concentrations up to 1.02 μg/L were found. In all the cases the highest concentrations were well below the respective guideline values defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) for drinking water quality. Source

Peviani M.A.,RSE SpA | Danelli A.,RSE SpA | Cesca M.,ARPA Veneto
Proceedings of the International Conference on Fluvial Hydraulics, RIVER FLOW 2014

In the framework of the Alpine Space Programme 2007-2013, several projects directed their attention on the optimization of water resources use and the promotion of renewable energy production. In this context, hydropower is the most important renewable energy source in alpine areas, but it also creates serious environmental impacts. The RES-e Directive requires the enhancement of renewable energy but, at the same time, the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) obliges member states to reach the "good ecological status" of water bodies. This often leads to conflicting issues, between hydropower generation and preservation of aquatic ecosystems. Several projects addressed these topics and significant outcomes have been achieved, but often it was not possible to create a direct link with key beneficiaries. The project Alpine space In Movement (AIM) aims at becoming a "megaphone" of the Alpine Space Programme projects active in the field of renewable energy production, water resources management and preservation of (aquatic) ecosystems. © 2014 Taylor & Francis Group, London. Source

Zappa M.,Swiss Federal Institute of forest | Beven K.J.,Lancaster Environment Center | Beven K.J.,Uppsala University | Beven K.J.,Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne | And 13 more authors.
Atmospheric Science Letters

The COST-731 action is focused on uncertainty propagation in hydrometeorological forecasting chains. Goals and activities of the action Working Group 2 are presented. Five foci for discussion and research have been identified: (1) understand uncertainties, (2) exploring, designing and comparing methodologies for the use of uncertainty in hydrological models, (3) providing feedback on sensitivity to data and forecast providers, (4) transferring methodologies among the different communities involved and (5) setting up test-beds and perform proof-of-concepts. Current examples of different perspectives on uncertainty propagation are presented. Copyright © 2010 Royal Meteorological Society. Source

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