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LANDSLIDE project provides a model for the prevention of the risk for landslides in Europe

LANDSLIDE project provides a model for the prevention of the risk for landslides in Europe

Landslide project, coordinated by the University of Camerino and co-funded by the European Commission, has been recently presented. It aims to prevent and mitigate the risk of hydrogeological instability that has progressively increased in Europe. The project focuses on the development and testing of a model and a software  to be used in the daily forecasts for possible landslide occurrence in Europe. 

To ensure increased promptness of interventions aimed at preventing and mitigating landslides in Europe is the objective of the project called LANDSLIDE-Landslide risk assessment model for disaster prevention and mitigation that has recently been presented in Brussels. Coordinated by the University of Camerino, the project can rely on a number of scientific partners, including the School of Science and Technologies at the University of Camerino, as well as the Institute of Information and Communication Technologies at the Academy of Sciences of Sofia (Bulgaria) and the Institute of Geodynamics at the National Observatory of Athens (Greece). Participants also include the Departments of Civil Protection of the Province of Ancona, Region of Marche, Region of Smolyan (Bulgaria), Bielsko-Biala (Poland) and Peloponnese (Greece). 

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There are several geological and environmental settings at risk for hydrogeological instability: a phenomenon that is especially dangerous for mountain and hill areas. Over the last few years, landslides have progressively increased all over Europe: a trend that has worsened due to the ongoing climate change leading to increasingly intense and long-lasting meteorological events that are among the main causes of landslides. Hence, the need for providing new tools for an accurate mapping and assessment of the risks related to landslide occurrence.

With this objective, LANDSLIDE intends to propose the development and testing of a model that, based on meteorological forecasts, can forecast daily the risk for surface landslides caused by rainfalls, as well as the development of an automatic software that timely transmits data to civil protection departments in order to implement preventive measures. To reach the first objective, models that study the composition and dynamics of soil humidity will be combined with models that calculate their stability in terms of level of danger of the landslide. The model will be developed by identifying test hydrographic basins and sharing the results collected on the field and it will then be translated into a software application that can interface with operative systems used by the civil protection. This study also includes the implementation of courses for experts in this field and cross-comparisons between the fields affected by or involved in the prevention of hydrogeological instability. 

The final objective is to transfer and apply this model to other territories that are stricken by landslides. Moreover, the project partners hope that further scientific studies will be carried out to expand the functions of this forecasting model to other natural risks. 

Publication date 03/23/2015
Source Redazione ResearchItaly