CVPK scientists held a press conference in Lány

A functional Smart landscape adapted to climate change and 2030+ conditions is starting to come to life at the Amálie farm near Lány. The aim of the project of the Centre for Water, Soil and Landscape at ČZU (CVPK) is to create and test a pilot Smart landscape that could become a model for specific areas not only in the Czech Republic but also in other parts of Europe.

Retention basins, wetlands, ponds, modern irrigation systems and a whole range of traditional and completely new agrotechnical measures, accompanied by the use of modern technologies, characterize the ongoing activities and plans of the pilot project of the Centre for Water, Soil, Landscape at Amálie. An area of approximately 500 hectares, defined by the Brejlský potok and the Králův luh catchment areas, is thus being transformed into the first ever so-called Smart Landscape. "The drought situation is very serious. We need to approach the problem systematically in order to get the landscape into a state that can withstand the very harsh impacts of climate change," says Petr Sklenička, Rector of ČZU and also the main coordinator of the CVPK. The Amálie site, which falls under the administration of the ČZU School of Life Sciences, is thus developing a comprehensive system of elements for adapting the agricultural landscape to enable sustainable use of water resources while optimising the productive and non-productive functions of the landscape.

Recent steps include the creation of three experimental plots to test the anti-erosion effectiveness and surface water infiltration capacity of sorghum cultivation. "In the lower part of the experimental plots, we have installed an anti-erosion barrier that serves as a direct surface runoff to the so-called Parshall flume, which measures the flow of water," explained Zbyněk Kulhavý from the Research Institute of Land Reclamation and Soil Protection, which is collaborating on the project.

The concept of the monitoring backbone network was also developed. "We are installing meteorological stations and gauging spillways in both catchments - Karlův luh and Brejlský potok. Thus, we will monitor the surface runoff of the river network in the basins," said Petr Máca, a member of the CVPK. Regular sampling campaigns are also currently being carried out to assess the hydrochemical indicators of water in the streams. "This regular long-term monitoring is mainly carried out to assess the impact of wetlands and reservoirs on water quality," recalled Jan Vymazal of the CVPK. All drainage systems were analysed throughout the area. A hydrogeological survey and monitoring boreholes are also being prepared to monitor groundwater levels.

The measurements taken are only the initial steps towards the implementation of functional measures. Preparations have now begun for the revitalisation of existing wetlands, reservoirs and drainage systems and the construction of at least two new reservoirs and wetlands. These are followed by reservoirs for the recovery of stored water for subsequent use, for example for irrigation.

The Amálie Smart Landscape is the first of the Centre for Water, Soil and Landscape's pilot projects. Forested landscapes and urban landscapes will follow. The Centre is also developing collaborations with other bodies. It is a new member of the Czech Smart City Cluster platform, where it is the leader of the section dedicated to environmental issues. Cooperation is also being established with some regions, such as Central Bohemia and the Pardubice region. This year, experts from the Centre are also going on a research mission to the Volcani Center in Israel.

The Smart Landscape was presented by members of the Centre for Water, Soil and Landscape at a press conference.

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