Nature Restoration Law and Case Green, INU: Italy's lack of support is a cause for concern


Emma Potter

Nature Restoration Law as a regulatory and strategic framework

“The Italian Government's lack of support for the European Union's Nature Restoration Law proposal cannot be shared by urban and territorial planners,” begins the INU statement.

“There urban and territorial planning of cities, metropolitan cities, provinces and Italian regions is all committed to the process of ecological and digital transition with the aim of intelligent and sustainable territories to combat climate change and increase competitiveness in the global economy. In this scenario the law provides a regulatory and strategic framework which uniformly and coherently directs the initiatives to the different levels of government of the territory, which would otherwise risk remaining episodic and fragmented, losing much of their effectiveness.”

The law consolidates and institutionalizes practices and knowledge developed experimentally that follow the paradigm of work in harmony with nature, an approach that has its roots in a long tradition of international urban planning that can be traced back to masters such as Geddes and McHarg, taken up in our country by Salzano, Campos Venuti, Magnaghi and cultivated, in our days, by a multitude of full members of the INU. Recovering naturalness especially within metropolises, conurbations and in general in anthropic areas is essential for fight air, water and soil pollution in a sustainable wayFor mitigate natural hazards according to approaches aware of the complexity of biotic processes, for consolidate biodiversityfunctional not only to the diversity of living species but also to make the living environment healthier – fighting, for example, heat islands and, more generally, providing a vast range of ecosystem services.”

“If opposition to the law arises from fear of its radical and dogmatic applicationit is necessary to overcome this obstacle with the awareness that it will be planning itself that will be able to do the job of adapting to local conditions and to establish processes and paths for progressive implementation in the complexity of real contexts, always trying to harmonize interests and find positive-sum solutions capable of satisfying all the stakeholders involved. A suspicion in this direction is fueled by the translation of restoration with the term restorationwhich has a completely different meaning of restoration, recalling a mythical and impossible return to the origins rather than a realistic evaluation of what is possible to concretely recover in the changed environmental and historical conditions.”

“The INU will continue to ask its members to work to refine theories, techniques and practices aimed at restore rivers and streams to their environment of permeable soil, flora and fauna; arpopular with woods and forests, the uncultivated peri-urban areas; to depaving waterproofed soils; to promote sustainable urban drainage; to designing green and blue infrastructure. Greater widespread knowledge of the benefits of this line of work and the possibility of verifying with concrete experimental realizations what the practical effects are could be the most effective support we can offer to the advancement of the law”.

Green Homes Directive: Italy's opposition is not far-sighted

The National Institute of Urban Planning INU does not even agree with another, more recent choice of the Italian government: “Opposition to the green homes directive risks proving to be short-sighted. The adaptation of our country's real estate assets, among the least performing, is an objective that must be pursued in any case. As well as contributing to mitigate global warmingaffects theenergy independence of Italy, with all the benefits for the family budget. Urban planning helps to derive maximum returns from investments in energy communities and urban energy systems. What is needed is a commitment to uniting and strengthening the voice of the forces in favor of the transition. The INU is ready to do its part.”

Press release by Press office National Institute of Urban Planning.