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In this last decade the Strategy has been implemented mostly through sector activities. In this regard, Italy has promoted over 300 projects of (i) Local Agenda 21; (ii) sustainable development in the depressed areas of Southern Italy; (iii) promotion of environmental certification for small and medium enterprises; (iv) promotion of programme agreements with industries for the creation of low emission systems and technologies with a high environmental and energetic efficiency; (v) research and development aimed at experimenting innovative systems for the production and exploitation of energy by means of renewable sources and hydrogen and of highly efficient technologies for the distributed generation of electricity, heat and cold; (vi) participation of scientific institutions and universities in research programmes, both European and international, for the protection and understanding of global environment.

Along with the provisions of the NSDS, the EU SDS and the EU2020 Strategy, Italy has also given great relevance to the implementation of some specific topics related to sustainable development, and namely the green public procurement (GPP) and the consumption and production patterns (SCP). To this end, a National Action Plan for the environmental sustainability of consumption in the public administration sector was issued.
The National Action Plan, adopted in 2008, sets out the general framework and encourages national and local authorities to adopt a GPP approach. It foresees, as a main national target, that at least 30% of goods purchased by the PAs shall comply with ecological criteria, and at least 30-40% shall have reduced electricity consumption. Public authorities are allowed to include “minimum environmental criteria” in the calls for tenders for goods or services listed in the Plan (e.g. paper for printers, furniture for offices, electrical devices, food services, vehicles….).
Through Ministerial Decree of 6 June 2012 Public authorities were recently provided also with operational instructions and guidelines to take account of social criteria in the definition of tenders for goods and services and for the execution of works.
Social criteria are aimed at promoting the implementation along all the supply chain of social standards relating to fundamental human rights and working conditions, such as social protection floor, minimum wage, the protection of children from child labor.

The private sector has also been stimulated to conduct responsible business through the guidelines foreseen in the National Action Plan for Corporate Social Responsibility, developed by the Ministry of Economic development and Ministry of Labour in compliance with the European Comission Communication 681 (2001) ‘A renewed EU strategy 2011-14 for Corporate Social Responsibility’ :

The main commitment on sustainable development policy in Italy for future years is to ensure that sector policies are consistent and coherent and not undermined by other policies. Improving policy coherence and integration for the pursuit of the goal of sustainable development requires specific attention to governance practices, drawing attention to the main obstacles to be overcome at domestic level in order to address the institutional challenges raised by the pursuit of shared objectives.

To develop national policies and measures aimed at sustainable growth, while at the same time cutting public expenditure and invert public debt trend will be a big challenge.

In order to achieve this goal, some actions have been already put in place. The CIPE has recently approved the updated National Action Plan for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The new Plan foresees to continue the process of de-carbonisation of the economy of the country through actions to support the green economy, consistently with the new National Energy Strategy.

Among the measures proposed, the extension of tax deduction for energy efficiency in buildings, the extension until 2020 of white certificates for energy savings, the promotion of renewable energy sources, the green technologies database and the refinancing of the revolving of Kyoto fund are the most relevant ones.


This Country Profile has been last updated on: Monday, 27 May 2013

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