Key words: Citizens’ CO – Observatory on Floods
Flood forecasting – Emergency protocol preparation – Flood protection
The CO – “Citizens’ Observatory on Floods” is a hydraulic risk mitigation measure provided for in the Flood Risk Management Plan (FMP) established under the EC Directive 2007/60/EC.
The Directive states in its preamble that: floods have the potential to cause fatalities, displacement of people and damage to the environment, to severely compromise economic development and to undermine the economic activities of the Community.
CO stands for “Citizen Observatory”, which indicates a group of “Citizen Observers”. The COmmunity on river floods is therefore a community of observers in which citizens and experts work together to promote self-protection from flood events by collecting and sharing environmental data according to the logic dictated by citizen science, i.e. the science that studies and represents the considerable potential in the use of collective intelligence.
The experience of the CO – “Citizens Observatory on Floods” on the Brenta – Bacchiglione area of Veneto was taken as a benchmark by the European Commission as a Best Practices in the application of citizen science to environmental monitoring.