LIFE AGREE - coAstal laGoon long teRm management



The project location is the vast coastal lagoon area of the ‘Sacca di Goro’ (situated in the province of Ferrara). The Natura 2000 site’s important coastal habitats and waterbird species are under threat from eutrophication of the lagoon waters, due to accumulation of underwater vegetation. Also, there is a lack of nesting sites for a several species listed in the Birds Directive.


The project’s overall objective is the long-term conservation of the habitats and species of the delta coastal lagoon. This will be achieved by adopting integrated management techniques that seek to use to positive effect the dynamism of the lagoon and its constant sedimentary deposit.

A further goal is the integrated management of the lagoon area, following an ecosystem and functional approach, in which both public authorities and private stakeholders are involved over the long term.

Expected results:
•Improvement of the water circulation and the elimination of the eutrophication problems caused by macro algal bloom and subsequent degradation of the water;
•Change in the direction of the outer bank, which will now be oriented towards south/southwest, in order not to close off the sea water flow into the lagoon (As well as the excavation of sub-lagoon channels, this will guarantee a good circulation of water);
•Improvement of the hydraulic conditions allowing the conservation of the coastal lagoons over an area of around 1 000 ha (corresponding to around half of its extension), and the sandbanks, because of the negative impact of the eutrophication problems on the fauna of the lagoon/seabed, including the Adriatic dwarf goby (Knipowitschia panizzae) and Canestrini's goby (Pomatoschistus canestrinii) (The dredged material will be used to expand the adjacent Mediterranean salt meadows);
•Establishment of three hectares of nesting islets for the waterbird species – the Kentish plover (Charadrius alexandrines), little tern (Sterna albifrons) and Eurasian Oystercatcher (Haematopus ostralegus) – with a consequent increase in breeding pairs.

Project details

 Scientific responsability: Umberto Simeoni, Giuseppe Castaldelli, Michele Mistri.

 Funding source: LIFE+


Start date 1/06/2014 - end date 30/04/2019

Total cost: 4.381.801 €

EU contribution: 2.190.900 €

EU contribution to UniFe: 151.266 €


  • Provincia di Ferrara, Coordinator (Italy)
  • Corpo Forestale dello Stato - Ufficio Territoriale per la Biodiversità di Punta Marina (Italy)
  • Ente di Gestione per i Parchi e la Biodiversità - Delta del Po (Italy)
  • Organizzazione di Produttori e Pescatori della Vongola della Sacca di Goro e Gorino Società Cooperativa Consortile (Italy)
  • O.P. Vongola di Goro Soc. (Italy)
  • Regione Emilia-Romagna Direzione Generale Ambiente e difesa del suolo e della costa Servizio Tecnico di Bacino Po di Volano e della Costa (Italy)