The Serre-Ponçon reservoir in the French Alps (2001). © BRGM - François Michel

CONCERT-EAUX: impacts of climate change on water resources in the Roya catchment basin

The BRGM is one of the 7 partners in the CONCERT-EAUX project. This project, funded by the European ALCOTRA programme and launched in April 2017, is addressing climate change and the impacts of global change on water resources in the Roya catchment basin.


CONCERT-EAUX is an Interreg project launched under a memorandum of understanding signed after the closure of the European EUR-EAU-PA project in 2013, which addresses a major transboundary issue: protection of the quality and quantity of water resources by coordinating the different players involved across the area.

The Roya alluvial aquifer, located in Italy, is a vital and irreplaceable resource.  It is used for drinking water for neighbouring populations in France, Monaco and Italy, but also for hydropower.


The Roya catchment basin. © EUR-EAU-PA project

The Roya catchment basin. © EUR-EAU-PA project

In the last ten years, about ten successive projects for the Roya catchment basin have produced a common database and set up a network to monitor resources in the alluvial aquifer. The different players are now cooperating to address climate change and its impacts on the basin's water resources.

An observatory and a more efficient hydrogeological model

The BRGM will be piloting development of the hydrogeological model of the aquifer under the EUR-EAU-PA project. The introduction of additional sensors will help to better characterise and locate exchanges between the aquifer and the river. The consolidated hydrogeological model will be designed as a decision-support tool and will also improve understanding of the potential impacts of climate change on the resource.


A video survey campaign and multiparameter diagraphs under the CONCERT-EAUX project. © BRGM - F. Rivet

The BRGM will also set up a water resource observatory, in the form of a web site for direct 3D displays of water level time series measured across the catchment area.  Displays of the salt wedge and changes in water level in relation to the river flow rate or rainfall will also be available (Roya water resource observatory).

A transboundary context

The Roya basin is located in the Maritime Alps, where the French-Italian border crosses the river. The upstream reaches, in France, cover about 600 km2, while the Italian part covers only 70 km2. Although the French part is much larger than the Italian part, the reverse is true for the populations living in the catchment basin: 6 000 in France and 30 000 in Italy, mainly in Ventimiglia.


Liguria Region (project coordinator)

University of Genoa

Ligurian regional agency for environmental protection (ARPAL)

Ligurian international research institute (IISL)

Maralpin joint flood control, planning and water management body (SMIAGE)


BRGM - 3 avenue Claude-Guillemin - BP 36009 45060 Orléans Cedex 2 - France Tel.: +33 (0)2 38 64 34 34