The Apuan Alps are a mainly calcareous-metamorphic range in Northern Tuscany that attains the height of ca. 2.000 m above sea level; they imposingly rise on the coastal plain of Versilia, along the Ligurian-Tirrenian Sea. On account of some peculiarities, the whole range, where a Regional Park was established in 1985, may be regarded as a geological heritage, or geosite, of particular environmental value; we refer, for example, to its “alpine” type morphology, characterized by sharp peaks, steep slopes and deeply cut valleys, that make the Apuan Alps very different from the adjacent main chain of the Apennines. Also relevant - and of still greater ambient importance - is the landscape which in a short distance grades from sharp white marble peaks to the coastal plain. There are also specific geosites, related to particular geological, geomorphological or environmental aspects. Among them, the following must be mentioned: surface and underground karst features (Antro del Corchia is among the widest cave system in Europe), such erosive phenomena as pot-holes and ancient glacial evidences, mainly cirques and moraines. By contrast, a marble quarrying activity has been in operation in the Apuan Alps for more than twenty centuries; it often interfered with some of the geosites. This interference resulted either in the destruction of the geosites, or in an important landscape modification due to the quarry excavation itself and the accumulation of marble fragments in quarry dumps (locally called “ravaneti ”). Moreover, the pollution of water supplies contributes to the alteration of natural conditions. With regard to ravaneti, their role is particularly complex; while changing the physical reality, in particular cases their intimate connection with the landscape raises ravaneti to the rank of geosites. So they, or at least the most important of them, become elements to be defended from reworking, through excavation of inert materials, a possibility frequently proposed today. Since the present legislation does not guarantee effective environmental protection, safeguard criteria must be sought and established, which may permit the coexistence of a productive industry, like quarrying, with the safeguard of geosites. The imminent drafting of the “Park Plan”, which should specify the areas to be used as a “total reservation”, appears to be the operational moment. This phase of territorial planning will start with a census of existing geosites, to be followed by the sanctioning of a set of obligations, aimed at protecting the identified geosites. In fact, only a global safeguard policy will contribute to the preservation of “landscape” and “environment” resources, as vital for the Apuan area as the economically important marble industry.
|Autori interni:||D'AMATO AVANZI, GIACOMO ALFREDO|
|Autori:||D'Amato Avanzi G.; Verani M.|
|Titolo:||Quarrying activities and geosites of the Apuan Alps (north-western Tuscany, Italy): coexistence possibilities and protection criteria|
|Anno del prodotto:||2000|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|