EauSIRIS - Nouvelle Stratégie de gestion des Eaux, des Sols et Implémentation des technologies vertes pour une agRIculture réSiliente au changement climatique- is a project that was selected for a European Union funding through the Italie-Tunisie cross-border cooperation program, in the framework of the European Neighbourhood Instrument.
The project answers the thematic objective ”Environment protection and climate change adaptation“ of the Italie-Tunisie strategic call for proposals.
A pillar of both Tunisian and Sicilian economies, agriculture faces today new challenges that need to be urgently addressed to ensure the sustainable development for this vital sector. In fact, water scarcity and soil degradation, intensified by the adverse effects of climate change are increasing vulnerability of agriculture production and putting at high risk water and food security in both regions. Moreover, the agriculture sector's current heavy dependence on fossil fuels increases its economic vulnerability and carbon footprint.
The EauSIRIS project proposes the elaboration and promotion of a new multidimensional science-based strategy to ensure a sustainable, climate resilient and energy efficient agriculture.
Following the completion of various studies and the establishment of mechanisms to stimulate cross-border collaborative work, a strategic alliance between key Tunisian and Italian actors will be created to develop innovative scientific solutions and propose a new legal framework for the Implementation and promotion of the EauSIRIS strategy that will focus on: (i) securing and diversifying water resources at small and medium scales, (ii) soil conservation and adaptation measures to extreme weather conditions, (iii) Use of smart agriculture techniques and '' renewable energies for the rationalization of water and energy consumption, and (iv) Use of monitoring and evaluation systems.
The project pilot actions will first target selected hill lakes that will be upgraded. Local authorities and communities will benefit from a capacity building program for the optimal management and use of hill lakes resources and environment protection.
The project will also target farmers directly through the delivery of a training program and training the implementation of Demonstration Farms that will help promote the implementation of the EauSIRIS strategy.
The EauSIRIS project consortium brings together key actors from Sicily and Tunisia in the fields of agriculture, sustainable development, natural resources management, and green technologies. The project aims to exploit the synergies and exchange of knowledge/good practices between Italian and Tunisian partner institutions for the implementation of a multidimensional strategy to ensure enhanced climate change resilience in agriculture, while reducing the energy intensity of this sector.