The Delta Contract is a 2x3 years actions program for a balanced and sustainable management of water and aquatic environments. Now in its second phase 2016-2019
In Camargue, water is an economic, biological and cultural resource. It constitutes a major link between human activities and ecosystems, and focuses on high stakes. Indeed, this territory is the Rhone delta, it was formed by the action of the river and the sea. As a large wetland it has always influenced the occupation and use of space. Most human activities (agriculture, fishing, hunting, ...) and natural environments are related to water, but their needs are not always compatible.
This situation requires the implementation of appropriate management: the Camargue Delta Contract promotes this global and shared management of water in respect of different users and natural environments. The program is built through extensive consultation of the structures involved in the management of water and aquatic environments : local authorities and public institutions, associations, professional structures, union association owners. After having collectively approved the diagnosis of the territory (= the stakes), the actors validate the objectives of the process and then build the action program.
This approach connects the structures carrying projects on the water and the financial partners; they both sign the "contract" on the implementation of the actions.
The actions are divided in 6 main topics:
- knowledge and monitoring
- water quality
- water ressource management
- quality of aquatic systems
- coastline and marin life
- information and governance.
Two types of needed resources :
- the resources necessary for carrying out the action program (= the cost of the actions themselves),
- the resources needed for the coordination and animation of the approach, provided by the Camargue Park which is identified as a "supporting strucures".
Evidence of success
63 actions in the first phase of the Delta Contract 2013-2015, represent 21,8 M€. This first phase has been evaluated in 2016:
-26 actions have been completed for a amount of 8,9 M€ (41%).
-25 actions are planned in partners programs or realized in 2019 for an amount of 7,6M€ (35%).
In total, 73% of the contract program phase 1 has been achived.
To consult online the 63 actions and the 2016 mid term review:
https://www.parc-camargue.fr in the “téléchargement” section.
Potential for learning or transfer
The Delta of Camargue is characterized by the diversity of the activities occurring in the territory. This diversity in land use maintains the diversity of the natural habitats, preserving the resilience of the delta. But the balance can’t be reach without a consensus, as each community has its own need about water management, in terms of salinity, quantity etc. Their goals can be opposite. So the management of the water in the delta area needs to be debate within a common governance.
The Delta Contract preserves the jurisdiction of each partner, that has the responsibility to decline the principles and the actions identified in its own measures. We can observe that the asset of the Delta contract is the coordinating team project (the Park of Camargue) that support the partners, help them with subsidy request, and foster the project in general. Another explanation of this success is the mutual commitment of all the partners involved in the program.