Repairing is not enough. What does Figliuolo need for a breakthrough. Also green

Repairing is not enough.  What does Figliuolo need for a breakthrough.  Also green

There is a common thread linking the appointment of the flood commissioner in Romagna to the controversy over the new European law for the restoration of nature. Let's start with Europe. For several years, the European Commission and Parliament have been trying to define the economic future of the continent. The Law of Nature is only the latest in a sequence of interventions, of which the most significant is the Green Deal: through NextGenEU funds, it has made available enormous resources to incentivize the transition to a low-emissions economy (it is from those resources that the PNRR is financed in Italy.). European funding is not a gift. They accompany rules and expectations that serve to push member states' economies to reach a very specific future. Controversies often focus on the cost this package imposes on the economy, or on the ideologies that motivate support or opposition to this transition – avoiding a catastrophic fate, as some say, or imposing particular values ​​on everyone, as others complain. In reality, these controversies are a distraction. The transition has been a train in motion for several years. China declared itself an "ecological civilization" in 2012, not because of an environmentalist sacred fire but because, as a country poor in oil and with a manufacturing vocation guided by almost global geopolitical interests, it understood that being a leader in renewable technologies brings immense advantages, regardless of whether it continues to make use of coal for electricity generation in the short term. After years of laziness and inaction on these issues, the United States found itself intent on de-coupling its economy from China's, and came to similar conclusions: The Biden administration brought home the Inflation Reduction Act, releasing an unprecedented amount of federal resources to decarbonize the country's industry and transportation and to secure the territory from climate change. This context is important. We are facing an unprecedented period in which the most powerful governments in the world have decided to finance the most aggressive industrial policies in history. It's already happening. Resisting as if the transition were only an ideological habit would be like insisting on wanting to get around in a buggy when everyone around has bought a car. One may be nostalgic for the past, angry about the inevitable costs that transition imposes, but none of these feelings will change the facts. The problem is that rhetoric in Europe has always been ahead of practice. Now the continent is trying to run for cover, pushing the accelerator while managing a war on its border and growth slowed by inflation. In haste, the existential strategic imperative, that is prepare the continent's economy for the industrial future on the horizon, risks crashing against the perception that decisions have been little shared among member states such as Italy, which suffer them instead of shaping them. It is no coincidence that, in a recent speech later published in this newspaper, President Draghi emphasized the European response to climate change. It is an archetype of how the lack of political unity prevents fully strategic conduct. On the environmental front, as on the monetary front, Europe suffers from a pathological political incompleteness, from which the resistance of member states then derives. This does not mean that nothing has been done for sustainability in Italy. Far from it. We are European and, in some cases, global leaders in technologies and solutions that will serve the economy of the future. But given the parochialism and fragmentation typical of Italian society, it is unthinkable to transform its economy without providing the population, the authorities and the thousands of small businesses that make up the country's social fabric with the tools to decline that transition in their local reality. Italy needs native archetypes that demonstrate what it means in practice to transform our territory. And it is here that General Figliuolo plays a fundamental role. Romagna is facing a crossroads. On the one hand, there is the reconstruction of what was, as it was, to get an economy back on track that had not yet fully faced the challenges ahead. This road assumes that the future of Romagna is its past, that agriculture will not be fundamentally different from what we had, that forestry management will continue as it was, that the added value comes from tourism, and that the life of young people from Romagna will be indistinguishable from that of their fathers: an island of buggies in a world of cars. But the other road, at the crossroads, leads in a different direction. It is an option that the people of Romagna can exercise to take advantage of the disaster, however inevitably painful, and correct the shot, questioning what future makes sense to pursue, and how to reconcile the territory and its natural heritage with a modern and productive economy. This, after all, is the path that Europe is awkwardly trying to encourage. When the general is faced with economic operators, political representatives, and members of civil society from Romagna, he will have the opportunity to facilitate an important conversation: if we agreed to imagine a different future for the region, what would we want to build to make it ready to face the challenges of a changing world? The resistance to European pressure is understandable, but it risks being an excuse for not answering this question which, sooner or later, the whole country will have to ask.

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