Transition? Yes, but may the North not win

twelve o’clock, February 16, 2021 – 08:28

of Ernesto Mazzetti

Transition: the word that enters the government onomastics. the Ministry of Ecological Transition was born, entrusted by Prime Minister Draghi to a renowned scientist, Roberto Cingolani. Will this innovation be good or bad in the vocabulary of politics? A first effect, undoubtedly useful, it had having convinced the deity of M5S Grillo to support the new government, in spite of some recalcitrant. To understand the subsequent effects, outside the parliamentary dialectic, but concrete in the scenario of the problems weighing on the country afflicted by the pandemic, and on the regions and cities of the South that show the most suffering from the consequences, we probably have to wait. Dynamism is inherent in the concept of transition: the passage from one condition to another. It’s about a number of things; life of individuals, history of peoples; biological, chemical, geological changes and so on. In recent years, environmental experts have come to favor the use of transition, no longer satisfied by the concept of sustainability: what, in June 1992, the UN summit in Rio de Janeiro had taken as a principle to induce all the countries of the world to direct their policies towards sustainable development.

L’the combination of the noun development with the adjective sustainable over time had revealed ambiguity: when development compromised sustainability or, vice versa, the need for sustainability held back development. France was the first in Europe to try to avoid contradictory government policies in this regard. In the 1970s he created the Ministry for the Protection of Nature and the Environment, gradually inserting tasks to protect the sea, energy, way of life, housing, up to the current Ministry for the transition ecological and supportive. Since 2018, Spain has also entrusted the ecological transition and the demographic challenge to a ministry. Both, the French and the Spanish, run by women.

In essence, the objective of having ministerial structures that are not limited to the protection of territorial assets by protecting geology, hydrography, vegetation and landscape peculiarities, but use technological, digital, energy innovations that transform and develop productive activities capable of growing by minimizing soil consumption and harmful emissions. In short, enriching the country, creating work with respect for beauty and the old. Not surprisingly, a physics professor rich in operational experience was appointed to you. I doubt he had time to read the prolegomena of environmentalism, like Views of nature (1808) di A. von Hulboldt o The earth as modified by human action (1874) by GP Marsh, but much more up-to-date on applied research that makes him suitable for coordinating the tasks on the environment and energies so far distributed among various ministries. And to elaborate and start those projects strongly desired by Europe which finalizes the resources destined to Italy also for the development of the green economy.

The question at this point is whether in an ecological transition of this kind there will be room for commitments, projects, actions for the benefit of Naples and the South. I believe it is legitimate. Some perplexities have already aroused Giuseppe Provenzano’s exit from the ministry for the South and territorial cohesion who, coming from the Svimez experience, understood southern issues. Certainly more than Mara Carfagna can know, even though she recognizes her political capacity and good will. I find it significant that in his Sunday editorial in Corriere della Sera, Angelo Panebianco sounded an alarm bell: The north and the south are too far away. This is because – his supposition – if it is a question of reviving the productive system, source of national wealth, a large part of those resources (European, ed) will end up being directed towards the productive areas of the North.

Of course we don’t like such a type of transition. Panebianco takes care of increases in centrifugal thrusts; with a train of resentment and ideological and territorial contrasts. I would add more: misery, Camorra, further decline of large and medium-sized cities in the South, Naples in the lead. A transition without effective transformations where the Italian system is weaker will equate to neglect: that is, a grave political fault. I trust that with the sagacity that is recognized, Prime Minister Draghi knows how to escape it.

February 16, 2021 | 08:28


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