Giardino, C; Bresciani, M; Villa, P; Martinelli, A (2010). Application of Remote Sensing in Water Resource Management: The Case Study of Lake Trasimeno, Italy. WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT, 24(14), 3885-3899.
Satellite multi-sensor data were used to investigate the evolution in time and space of Lake Trasimeno, a shallow and turbid lake in central Italy. Large-swath MERIS and MODIS sensors were proposed for regular broad scale monitoring of water quality, having compared the retrieved chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) concentration, Secchi disk (SD) depth and surface water temperature with the 2005-2008 time-series of the in situ data. Although, in a shorter time span, also the MERIS-derived total suspended matter (TSM) matched the in situ data. MERIS-derived water quality products confirmed the meso-eutrophic conditions of Lake Trasimeno (average Chl-a = 8.5 mg/m(3)) and the low levels of transparency (average SD = 1 m). A negative correlation found between water levels and Chl-a suggest the importance of maintaining water levels as close as possible to the hydrometric zero. A spatial analysis of TSM also reveals how small tributaries may affect the load of suspended solids in the southern part of the lake. Higher spatial resolution satellite images were exploited both to describe land use/cover transformation from 1978 to 2008 and to assess the recent changes in macrophyte colonisation patterns. Land cover change detection analysis results showed a decrease in cultivated areas starting from the early Nineties and the subsequent increase in unproductive terrain (bare land and pastures) and natural woods as well as the changing fragmentation of agricultural areas through time. A reduction in macrophyte beds from 2003 to 2008 was also observed. We expect the results of this study to support local water authorities in redrawing the management plan of Lake Trasimeno.