Gorges du Gardon
Coordinating structure / Administrative authority
Syndicat Mixte des Gorges du Gardon (SMGG)
Céline BOULMIER (biosphere reserve coordinator)
Main features and specificities
A Mediterranean river with irregular precipitation.
Last tributary of the Rhone river, the source of the river is in Lozère.
The Gardon is an assemblage of many smaller Gardon rivers that are named after the cities they cross, such as Alès, Anduze, Mialet… Together, they form the gorges du Gardon: a bigger karst system that has still not revealed all its secrets.
Cultural and social particularities linked to rivers
An industrial and mining past.
Swimming area all along the river.
Main problems and concerns
- water pollution (eutrophication, toxic substances)
- morphological deterioration of river beds
- biodiversity loss
- conflicts between water and land use
- invasive species
- loss of river-related cultural heritage (knowledge, identity…)
- flooding risks and water shortages, due to extreme variations
- degradation of wetlands and environments
Main know-how, skills and specialties
- Flood control.
- Establishing dialogue and concerted governance.
- Karst scientific studies.
Current scientific research topics and actions
- Hydromorphology of watercourses
- Pollution control
- Fighting eutrophication
Within the Gorges du Gardon BR, there are 8 more or less developed canoeing sites, that were built without authorization, despite the designated area and water legislation. More than 1,000 canoes belonging to 5 professionals paddle in the gorges. Most of the trips are...