Newsletter n.46


1.EXPERIENCES: Recommendations by the Professionals for Italy (Professionisti per l’Italia) and the Italian Alliance for Sustainable Development (ASviS)





Recommendations by the Professionals for Italy (Professionisti per l’Italia) and the Italian Alliance for Sustainable Development (ASviS)

Let’s be honest, people that focus on issues of soil, landscape and territories often feel like they are talking to a brick wall. Nonetheless, sometimes it turns out that someone has been paying attention and has even endorsed some of the principles and values that have been promulgated.

We were pleased to read the document introduced to the press and trade representatives last 21 February by the United Permanent Committee of Professional Boards and Associations (CUP) and the Network of Technical Professions (RTP). The document is entitled (in Italian) “Professionals for Italy – Ideas for modernising the country”.

Out of the eleven themes set out in the document, we would like to focus on the following ones: Continua a leggere “Recommendations by the Professionals for Italy (Professionisti per l’Italia) and the Italian Alliance for Sustainable Development (ASviS)”


SIP FORUM: Draft law to put a halt to soil consumption

The SIP Forum’s draft law, which was published a month before the Italian general elections, had drawn the attention of the political world and of the media.

As mentioned in the previous newsletter, the draft law has a universal appeal and its reach should extend beyond the Italian borders.

It was officially introduced on 1 March in Rome, in the Palazzo Mattei di Paganica at the Institute of the Italian (Treccani) Encyclopaedia.

You can view the video recording of the event here:

The English version will be available next May.


International arbitration clause – incompatible with the EU!

In the past, we talked about the international arbitration clause, stating it was an additional mechanism invented to prevent multinational companies from being affected by policies defending the environment and human rights. Now, the European Court of Justice (EUCJ) has ruled that such a procedure is incompatible with EU law ().

According to the ruling handed down on 6 March 2018, “the arbitration clause in the bilateral investment treaty has an adverse effect on EU law and is therefore not compatible with it”. This marks the first time that the EUCJ issues a ruling on the regulatory procedure of dispute settlements between investing undertakings and States. Continua a leggere “International arbitration clause – incompatible with the EU!”



The time is ripe to revive circular economy in the EU.  In a matter of weeks we have seen a specific European Parliament resolution being prepared[1], as well as the long-awaited approval of the EU strategy on plastics[2], and a communication on the options to address the interface between chemical, product, and waste legislations[3]. All of these points are covered in the report from the Commission on the implementation of the circular economy action plan[4] published in January 2017. Among the conferences and debates that surround this report, it is worth mentioning the European circular economy stakeholder platform conference that took place in Brussels on 20 and 21 February[5], as well as the third international circular change conference – unfolding circular economy roadmaps – in Slovenia next 10 and 11 May[6].

Does it serve a purpose? Continua a leggere “NEWS ON SOIL AND EUROPEAN INSTITUTIONS: Circular Economy”


Pesticide free management of green public areas

Last 27 February, the webinar[1]Pesticide free management of green public areas” took place. It was the first training event organised by PAN Europe as part of its Campaign on “Pesticide Free Towns”. PAN (Pesticide Action Network) is a Brussels-based NGO founded in 1987 and is committed to fight against the use of pesticides (see the October 2017 Newsletter n.40 for a brief introduction to PAN ).

The European Network of Pesticide Free Towns is a PAN project that seeks on the one hand to gather a critical mass of towns and cities committed to stopping the use of pesticides, and on the other hand to act as a European platform where experiences, practices, and knowledge can be shared and mutual support can be offered.

Amongst the Webinar participants was Michela Bilotta, the project coordinator for Italy. She underlined how important it was for the municipalities that have decided to ban the use of pesticides in public areas to raise awareness amongst its citizens via a variety of tools, by creatively resorting to social media, poster boards, etc. Many French and Flemish municipalities have already done so.

Professor Fabio Taffetani, tenured professor of the Marche Polytechnic University delivered a very interesting speech, describing the type of spontaneous plants that Continua a leggere “Pesticide free management of green public areas”


4 per 1000 initiative: Closed-door workshop with potential investors

Last 8 February, the Nature Conservancy, Cornell University and the 4 per 1000 Initiative organised a joint workshop, hosted by the Hoffman Centre for Sustainable Resource Economy. This invitation-only event explored the potential creation of synergies in terms of investment and action on soil organic carbon storage and sequestration. It sought to better understand the results of scientific studies on soil organic carbon to feed into the decision-making processes of the various public and private economic sectors.

This event followed the Chatham House rules, whereby participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker, nor that of any participant may be revealed. Only the final document, summarising the debate, is made publicly available. Continua a leggere “4 per 1000 initiative: Closed-door workshop with potential investors”