View of Apennine Ridge from Vignolo di Lusignana

The upper Magra valley is rich in flora and fauna. There is a low population density and virtually no heavy industry so that levels of pollution are very low with the River Magra being one of the cleanest watercourses in Italy.

Air pollution arises mainly from two sources – forest fires and the use of timber for domestic fuel.

Trees grow rapidly in this part of the Apennines so it could be claimed that wood burning is a renewable source of energy. Unfortunately, however, for reasons of convenience an increasing number of households are using pellet stoves whose fuel is not sourced locally.

The major environmental problem takes the form of landslip, the mountains consisting of loosely compacted material easily released under the influence of the intermittent but very heavy rainfall typical of the region.

Flooding has become an increasing problem in recent years. On 25 October 2011 there was a storm during which over 540mm of rain fell within a few hours. The resulting surge in the River Magra was 4m high and the town of Aulla was badly flooded with two people losing their lives.