The southern portion of the Venice coastland is a very precarious environment and salt contamination of land and groundwater is a severe problem that is seriously impacting the farmland productivity. Geophysical surveys, lab testing and continuous monitoring of hydrological parameters together with crop yield distribution were performed and acquired from 2010 to 2012 in a 21ha basin cultivated with maize crop and representative of the area. The dataset is here used to set-up a numerical model of soil moisture dynamics coupled with plant transpiration, photosynthesis and growth. The hydraulic model is linked to the atmosphere by the calculation of the stomatal conductance which is optimized for maximum carbon gain. The model is applied to the field site to understand the impact of land elevation, soil heterogeneities, and seawater contamination on land productivity.
Procedia Environmental Sciences, 2013, Vol 19, p. 361-368