On the reform of justice, a single appeal for three voices speaking on behalf of the planet. It is that of Legambiente, WWF and Greenpeace, the environmental organizations that today turned to Minister Marta Cartabia and Prime Minister Mario Draghi: “No to the blow of the sponge on environmental crimes that threaten the health of citizens, the good economy and the safety of the our country – they reiterated -. The Government should include the environmental crimes introduced in our Criminal Code among those of particular gravity and complexity that require longer times for carrying out investigations and trials ».
The “blow in the sponge”
“We ask the Government – they write in a joint note – to modify the text under discussion in the Chamber to avoid that all the investigations and processes already started thanks to those rules voted by a large majority in Parliament are shamefully canceled”. The data, collected and processed by the Ministry of Justice and published every year in the Legambiente Ecomafia Report, for the period from 2015 to 2020 indicate 4,636 criminal proceedings initiated by the Italian prosecutors (of which 623 archived), with 12,733 people reported and 3,989 custody orders issued. If thousands of criminal proceedings already underway for the crimes introduced in our Criminal Code with Law 68 of 2015 and subsequent amendments were to be canceled, “Italy risks taking a sensational step backwards in protecting the environment”.
The environmental disasters up to the fires of Sardinia
“It took twenty-one years, since we published the first Ecomafia Report, to see crimes against the environment included in the Criminal Code, from pollution to environmental disasters to waste trafficking – explains to Stampa.it Enrico Fontana, head of ‘National Observatory for the Environment and Legality of Legambiente -. Today, investigations of great importance are possible, such as those on the 150,000 tons of contaminated sludge scattered on agricultural land in Northern Italy or on the devastation caused by the illegal fishing of sea dates. But even the fires of Sardinia, if an intentional origin should emerge, have the dimensions of a real environmental disaster. They are all serious crimes that require complex investigations and adequate times ».
“For these reasons – continues Fontana – we strongly ask the government and the majority that supports it, engaged in these hours to find an agreement on the reform of justice, not to cancel a civilization reform, denying the possibility of doing justice in name of the polluted people. But that’s not enough: it is essential to simultaneously strengthen the technical-scientific structures of the Regional Agencies for the protection of the environment, which support the police and the judiciary in their work and are still awaiting the implementing decrees of the reform made in 2012, such as the one for the personnel of the judicial police “.
The overview of the crimes includes only as examples the environmental disaster caused by the former Ilva di Taranto, the pollution from pfas in the drinking water of the Veneto, or the omnipresence of purifiers that pollute the Calabrian and Sicilian coasts.
For the environmentalists “without the modification requested by Legambiente, WWF and Greenpeace to the text presented by the Government, the so-called Cartabia reform, any hope of obtaining justice in the name of the polluted people will be betrayed”.
We appeal to the “results that testify to the extraordinary commitment of the Police Forces in the face of crimes of particular complexity from a legal point of view and of the technical-scientific investigations necessary to ascertain what happened, which is already difficult to deal with today without a strengthening of the structures of the State, starting with the Regional Agencies for the protection of the environment, delegated to the control system, as loudly requested but so far in vain ».