We reported in a previous newsletter how the SIP Forum’s draft law became a proposal in the Chamber of Deputies on 23 March. It did not stop there: in July the text was presented to the Italian Senate. The SIP Forum therefore now bears a growing responsibility. It would be a mistake to think that the “game” is over and that the text will swiftly obtain its final approval. Given that it has not been possible over the past 20 years to get a law passed against soil consumption, it will not be an easy task to gain approval in a short space of time for a law that puts in place solid foundations for the protection of the soil and establishes a radical change in the way building and large construction projects are conceived.
At the same time it would be a mistake to think that this draft law applies only to Italy. It is worth remembering that a proposal for a European directive on the soil was discussed for no less than 8 years (2006-2014) – without ever being approved! Although it was far from revolutionary, the proposal set out the path that needs to be followed in order to safeguard the soil for future generations. Since that proposed directive was withdrawn we have been in a vacuum that could allow whatever emerges from the Italian “door” back through the EU’s “window”. This is why we must consider immediately whether the text of the Italian draft law as it stands should be put before EU bodies and institutions in order to extract from it the principles of a new EU directive.
The SIP Forum is fully aware of this and has already taken steps to this end. Among the various initiatives that have been undertaken is one to join and support the Good Food, Good Farming Campaign which will be held as part of the European Days in Brussels on 27 and 28 October. The aim is to draw attention to the upcoming reform of the CAP in 2020 in order to put in place a system that supports small farmers and rural life, does not contribute to climate change or cause animal suffering and allows the production of healthy food for all. This includes protection of the soil, water, ecosystems and biodiversity.