Main Article Content
The plain areas of Lombardy are part of a territorial context, such as that of the Po Valley, which is the main in Italy and among the most important in Europe for quantity and quality of agricultural and food production. What further contributes to the exceptional nature of these areas is the historical legacy linked to the development of agricultural activities, which finds one of its clearest and most important evidences in the extraordinary development of canals and irrigation artifacts since the Middle Ages. The diversions from the main rivers, with the extensive network of canals that they originate, have contributed to modeling the territory and shaping the Lombard landscape. The current arrangement of irrigation systems has, therefore, unique features and many positive aspects. On the other hand, one must recognize that the presence of many obsolete infrastructures, the sedimentation of ancient rights and the excessive fragmentation of management bodies are negative elements, particularly in some areas. Investments in the innovation of both the infrastructures and of their management are therefore needed, but it is equally indispensable to deploy an incisive planning action at the regional level, which addresses them clearly towards precise objectives, on which some proposals are put forward in this paper.
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