The Alpine lakes are one of the Alps' most prized assets. They are extremely attractive areas for not only tourism but also industry.
A number of industries have developed thanks to the tremendous resource represented by the lakes. One such example is the valves sector situated on Lake Orta in Italy.
The Alpine lakes also draw thousands of tourists, who flock to their shores in summer in search of wide open spaces and unspoilt nature. These magnificent landscapes have fascinated and attracted some very famous visitors, such as Stendhal and Queen Victoria.
Queen Victoria liked to take a sedan chair up the Chambotte belvedere to eat scones in a little inn and admire the view of Lake Bourget.
The Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur Region in France is in charge of identifying and listing all of the practices, regulations and customs concerned with resolving conflicts of usage.
One example of a tool used to resolve usage conflicts is a practice established by the Annecy lake management body, SILA. A committee composed of elected representatives, associations and users was set up to seek a consensus between users who engaged in motorised sports and the advocates of non-motorised sports. The committee is a forum for discussion and debate, and informs the decisions made by elected representatives in a bid to reconcile all the different ways the lake is used.
This general survey will provide the basis for a published guide: "Guide to good practice for resolving usage conflicts on the Alpine lakes".
This guide will serve as a decision aid for anyone confronted with usage conflicts.
photo of fishermen on Annecy lake
Fishing, whether amateur or professional, is a popular, very widespread activity on Alpine lakes.
However, fishing is also a source of conflict today. How can we reconcile professional and amateur fishing? What rules can we apply to protect fish without penalising fishing? How can fishing and other activities be made compatible with each other?
These are the questions that the Annecy lake management body, SILA, in France has set out to address. The partners in the European project will be asked to share their experience on all of these practices. The resulting information will then be analysed and compared, and made into a "Guide to good practice for fishing on the Alpine lakes".
The guide will be widely distributed to all structures concerned by this issue, giving lake managers a set of solutions that has been tested throughout Europe.
Fishing is an ancestral practice on Lake Annecy, as fish used to be part of the staple diet. The great families were already exchanging or selling fishing rights amongst themselves in the twelfth century!
Ports have a huge influence on the lake environment. Pollution can spread rapidly in stagnant bodies of water. Sediment builds up very quickly and has to be dredged, an activity that can also cause pollution.
The partners in the SILMAS project will therefore share their experience on the subject. The Lombardy Region is going to conduct a comparative study of the different practices in different countries.
It will publish a guide setting out the different practices, to serve as a toolkit for decision-makers confronted with problems of port management:
"Guide to good practice in port management on the Alpine lakes".