Innovations and Environment


Innovazioni per ambiente e strategie

Matteo Aristei
2019, July 11th


Ecology and, in general, everything that is related to the environment is becoming, as well in Italy, an essential element in the life of citizens . Of course many things are still to be done in our country, for now the situation is improving .

The most important topic today is that ecology is now also seen as a way out of the crisis by a large number of companies in numerous sectors from the nautical to the photovoltaic panels, from thermodynamics to biodegradable plastic, which are expanding unlike the traditional companies that still suffer the effects of the great economic crisis of recent years .

In fact, we are witnessing a small boom in what has already been called the green economy, which today has already created around 200,000 jobs a year, a figure that now corresponds to 20 % of the demand for labor in Italy and which seems to be the ‘ single ’ still growing . About 30 % of small and medium manufacturing companies now invest in environmental protection . This figure is close to 45 % in the case of an innovative company . In fact, technological innovation linked to environmental issues is becoming a driving force to move towards value – added production and to win over more demanding customers. With the ecological turn, in fact, more profitable markets open up, capable of intercepting an increasingly widespread demand abroad, but now also in Italy . In fact, in our country, following a recent survey, 76 % of the population declared that the development of a green economy is essential to make Italy grow and make it more competitive . Of the surveyed population, 71 % admitted that the improvement of the environmental situation concerns above all the behaviour of citizens and their direct involvement . It is clear that only if we reach 100 % of this figure and if everyone passes completely from words to deeds, we can hope to live in an ever cleaner environment and to leave a safer and healthier future for our children .

For example, one of the biggest problems in the modern world is the leak of water . It should be noted, however, that when you think of saving water you cannot limit yourself to the water that is consumed directly for drinking or washing . Most of the water we consume we consume it indirectly through the products we buy, especially agricultural products . Almost 60 % of fresh water coming from rivers, lakes or other water sources is used for irrigation of all fields .

Scientists around the world are racking their brains to create crops that need less water . We are opting for combinations of biotechnologies and traditional methods of varietal selection to achieve this objective . In the United States the Department of Agriculture has created a special team of scientists and researchers who come from 5 major universities to carry out a project on soybeans . Traditional methods not based on genetic engineering have been used to select a plant that can grow well in dry soils . The project was started in 1981 and the research started in China where soy is a traditional crop . In the USA, on the other hand, this crop has been known for a short time and for this reason almost all varieties in American fields are very similar genetically . This is negative because if a climate change occurs where crops are susceptible, the entire production of an entire year is in danger . In particular, one of the most concrete risks derives from unexpected droughts, which are increasingly likely due to climate change .

Scientists have studied more than 1500 varieties of plants, especially Asian varieties . The goal was to find something that naturally had the characteristics to overcome the long dry summers typical of some areas of North America without any problem . Only 5 varieties have been shown to have the right numbers . Obviously the conditions must not become too extreme otherwise the plants die . To overcome these extreme conditions it would be necessary to resort to genetic engineering and many companies are already doing it .

All these innovations and initiatives contribute to enhancing a greener economy, which is increasingly fundamental to combat climate change and pollution and, certainly, to create a better future .