Innovation and environmental issues


– Bianca Clement

The relationship between the environment and the economy is becoming ever more stringent. Human activities, above all of an entrepreneurial type, are no longer able to amalgamate within the terrestrial naturalistic system. And if the bear Daniza increases her aggression – forced to wear a radio collar that she certainly doesn't understand but scares her, forced to feed her children in the presence of scarcity of resources or reduction of natural territory – man is no less.

The news of the last few years – global economic crisis, climate change, globalization and the increase in crime in general – scare us, just like Daniza the bear was, and in the face of this we can have two different types of reactions: we increase the 'social aggression or we get depressed to the point of directing the aggression deriving from insecurity on our own body, I am referring to the increase in suicides even in the wealthy or relatively wealthy classes.

The conflictual man-environment relationship is a long-standing issue but we must bear in mind that it is not the animal or vegetable world that pollutes and destroys the balance, it is man who has this characteristic.

The problem came to public attention starting from the 70s, not so much for the effects on human health – who knows why it is always a matter of secondary importance – but for the harmful economic consequences that pollution brings with it.

In fact, it was around the 1970s that attention began to be focused on energy and food resources for the survival of mankind.

In this context, some cultural orientations developed such as those of Aurelio Peccei (Club of Rome) and the Meadows spouses of MIT (authors of the book "the limits of development") who proposed to even curb demographic and economic growth. (Alberto Azzi – full professor of economics at the Federico II of Naples)

From these theories then originated what has been called "the theory of happy degrowth", which immediately generated even greater disasters and imbalances.

Finally, only starting from the 80s, onwards, there was a change of course and concrete talk began about the scarcity of natural resources and environmental upheavals, placing environmental resources at the first point of Agendas of world governments.

The "war at the gates" does not help us. 

The catastrophic and dramatic events that are affecting the Middle Eastern countries, to varying degrees and for apparently different reasons (in reality, these wars, known as "religion" wars, materially move, are economic reasons for the dominance over the management of energy sources such as oil and gas, very present in the North Asian platform, or at least they are financed with the illegal oil trade and arms smuggling), are the symptom of the imbalance that degrowth and oriental ideologies have generated by clashing with western philosophies, in a broader picture of extreme resource exploitation and lack of planning and orientation of more "intense" productivity.

The trend reversal in the relationship between man and the environment, which has been mentioned since the 1980s, has hoisted its flag of "sacrosanct moderate battle” does not enjoy the same funding as the jihaidists and fundamentalists, unfortunately, however the ideas in the field are really many and all quite valid.

Salvation innovation

Environmental issues do not come into conflict with development and employment. It has been ascertained that innovations oriented towards environmental and technological sustainability could lead to an increase in employment of approximately 30% more than the current state. These are certainly indicative figures but very significant precisely in times in which the closure of many production plants has led to a drastic drop in "economic sustainability"

Finally the Charter of sustainable development envisages an environmental policy to support and support companies which could expand the collaborative figures, and in turn the environmental policy is expected to be supported by the area R&D – another sector that needs work development – for updates, checks and certifications.

Environmental protection certifications in Europe are called EMAS – European environmental management certification – better known by the name of edp – declaration of sustainable production.

How easily do you get these certifications? With the positive monitoring of production activities aimed at preventing the formation of greenhouse gases and pollutants from waste. with the reduction of carbon dioxide and with the storage of harmful or dangerous waste.

These technologies are called Carbon capture and storage and they could, according to the IEA (International Energy Agency) enable a reduction in global emissions of approximately 20-28% by 2050.

This is the Europe 2020 policy for the environment, but it has been underlined elsewhere that not only does the percentage ceiling for pollutant reduction seem difficult to achieve at present, but it actually proves to be very little against the accelerations that the same pollutants are showing up in the last few years.

Culture of innovation

At this point, after having studied all the types of flexibility applicable to the production of each sector - of which a summary summary has been made here - in order to "amalgamate" man with environmental sustainability, all that remains is to make a simple consideration : innovation is a habitus mental, it is culture in the proper sense.

For example

A purchasing system that favors products with a lower environmental impact (greenprocurement), , if adopted by the Public Administration, takes on the considerable size of 18% of the national GDP.

A precise address in this sense is given by the Green paper on integrated product policy of the European Community and the Directive 2004/18/EC of March 2004 concerning the procedures for awarding public contracts.

There STREET  (Environmental Impact Assessment) and the VAS (Strategic Environmental Assessment), so they become fundamental economic-environmental strategies

The EIA was born in America around the 70s and was introduced in Italy by DPCM 10/08/1988 on the basis of a European Directive updated with Legislative Decree 152/2006.

The .VAS comes from a Directive 2001/42/CE to ensure a high level of environmental protection.

These are obligations that companies and public administrations still have to deal with, in order to implement that "culture" and mental "habitus" so reluctant to "take root" in the "human environment"




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