In Italy fewer public forest nurseries. Among the weaknesses, the lack of technological innovation

In Italy fewer public forest nurseries. Among the weaknesses, the lack of technological innovation
In Italy fewer public forest nurseries. Among the weaknesses, the lack of technological innovation

by Giuseppe Varvaro

Is titled “National forest strategy“(Sfn) but relies on the modest (and thinned out in number) forest nurseries of the Regions: this is the preliminary technical report that will form the basis of the relative Decree – of the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies (Mipaaf) – which will provide the Italy by 2021, the year of the Italian G20 and the Cop26 of these days on climate change.

According to Report on the state of forests and the forest sector in Italy 2017/18 (Raf2019), one of the informational bases of the Sfn report, public forest nurseries have shrunk to a hundred. In Liguria alone, for example, there are now two forest nurseries (Raf 2019), while there were eight in 1977, as mentioned in the essay Forest propagation material and biodiversity conservation – the case study of Liguria, Manuals and guidelines 28/2003 Apat. The data gathered in the Raf 2019 attest that the average extension surface of these nurseries is about four hectares and that the production per unit / surface is estimated, by approximation, at an average value of about 13 thousand plants per hectare.

The Sfm report therefore highlights that for “forest propagation material” (MPF) it is necessary to intervene with a specific action, even if it is then unable to identify the monitoring indicators! The Sfn report, programmatic for the next twenty years, on this front confesses and predicts inconsistencies with various strategic directions: Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development, Climate Energy Strategy, Sen2017 Energy Strategy, Climate Change Adaptation Strategy, Bioeconomic Strategy. For less ominous predictions Italy should convert to fully pursue Global Goal number 4 of the United Nations Strategic Forest Plan (Psnuf) 2017-2030, which calls for the mobilization, in a meaningful way, of new and additional financial resources from all sources, for the implementation of sustainable forest management, and strengthen scientific and technical cooperation and partnerships.

Instead, the Consolidated Law on Forests (Tuff 2018) has characterized the sector both by respecting the rule of public financial invariance, and the exclusion of the Ministry of University and Research from the “concertation” on Sfn, addressed only to Mipaaf and the Ministries of the Environment (today of the Ecological Transition), of Cultural Heritage and Economic Development (devoid of a systemic perspective and not in keeping with a “strategy”, the only programmatic norm of Tuff 2018 appears, which “promotes “Collaborations with universities and research institutions).

In 2019 – the year in which the online platform was launched in Germany as a virtuous example of Internet of Trees Baum 4.0, which allows anyone and in real time not only to see, but also to monitor, in their physiological and phenological state, the trees of the Bavarian forest – in Italy at the Mipaaf the footprint of Tuff 2018 was traced in the composition of the Table of permanent consultation of the forestry sector, which it does not include additional charges (attendance fees), nor the presence of the University.

The Sfn report openly accounts for this state of affairs: it certifies inadequate financial coverage; indicates, among the elements of weakness, the low level of cultural and technological innovation of forestry companies; plans an operational action of Research and experimentation and technology transfer.

In the barren policy of nurseries, which will crave seeds to plant, a seed of hope for a new “strategic vision” sprouted this summer in Pistoia. There the nursery District, albeit of the private ornamental sector, has appointed as its head, as president, the prof. Ferrini, from the University of Florence, awarded by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA).

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