A Territorial Workshop on longitudinal biodiversity on the Garonne lateral canal

The Canal Latéral à la Garonne is the extension of the Canal du Midi which links Toulouse to the Mediterranea. Punctuated by several remarkable engineering structures, this canal is enhanced by alignments (including alignments of plane trees) and woodland that are an important issue in terms of maintaining biodiversity and landscape. At the origin of a massive dieback of plane trees along the banks of the Canal du Midi, the coloured canker (Ceratocystis platani) is today a cause of concern for public operations and the parties responsible for the development and management of the landscapes of the Canal Lateral à la Garonne. The arrival and spread of the pathogen must be anticipated within the framework of a common reflection based on the experience of a phenomenon that led to the restoration project of the plantations of the Canal du Midi.
Through a multidisciplinary approach combining ecological surveys, spatial and historical analysis, and semi-directive interviews, the project aims to produce a new contribution of knowledge for a better management of biodiversity and landscape issues on and around this structure, which will be confronted in the future with ecological and landscape requalification projects. Faced with the decline of a tree that is a marker of a landscape identity and a very strong tourist representation, the objective is to reflect on the implementation of a global landscape transition that will bring new functionalities and question the multiple actors in their ability to find a sustainable compromise for the planning and management of a territory that is also a tourist area. The consortium set up will reflect on the conditions of this landscape transition and on the levers that will enable the practices and needs of the different actors involved in the design and management of the development of the banks of the Canal Latéral à la Garonne to be cross-referenced and articulated.
The initial results will be an aid to decision-making and above all a solid basis for envisaging a more ambitious study in the perspective of international (France, Italy, Spain) research involving the services of the State, local authorities and other stakeholders, development professionals, associations and citizens attentive to their environment and their living environment.