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Fontana (Italy): with Covid and after, Planet’s health should be at center of political agenda

NEW YORK, JULY 5 – “Due to the global health emergency, the world is facing an unprecedented crisis that has deep roots in the health of the Planet. This crisis requires us to restart with a heightened spirit of collaboration, in the knowledge that safeguarding the Planet must be at the center of the political agenda,” said Undersecretary for Ecological Transition, Ilaria Fontana, speaking at the General Assembly’s high-level debate on ‘Desertification, Land Degradation and Drought’.

“The pandemic has shown that the well-being of humanity – including socially and economically – is closely linked to the well-being of ecosystems: damaging the Earth’s resources puts our quality of life, not to mention our survival, at risk. It is therefore essential, in order to get out of the crisis, to give priority to the conservation and sustainable management of the territory, also to strengthen food security and reduce the effects of the pandemic on poverty”, said Fontana.

For Italy, combating land degradation and protecting the Earth from threats caused by climate change and exploitation of natural resources are a central objective, which the government has decided to implement in the recently adopted National Recovery and Resilience Plan.

“We aim to integrate actions for the protection and restoration of degraded soils with measures dedicated to climate change mitigation and adaptation, as well as with actions to protect biodiversity. We therefore support “nature-based” and “land-based” solutions, and we are working to integrate the fight against drought and desertification in the main sectoral plans, such as those for the management of water resources and hydrogeological systems,” explained Fontana.

At the international level, Italy has always supported the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification [UNCCD], and is the only nation among industrialized countries to have adhered to the Convention for the “Neutrality of Land Degradation” from the beginning.

Soil and desertification represent another important axis of the program of the Italian presidency of the G20, focused on the three P’s: People, Prosperity and Planet. In view of the Ministerial Meeting for the Environment, Italy has decided to resume and strengthen the “Global Initiative to Reduce Land Degradation and Strengthen the Conservation of Terrestrial Habitats” launched by the Saudi Presidency in 2020.

Moreover, in line with the priority given to the Planet in development cooperation actions, Italy continues to be committed to the most vulnerable countries and communities exposed to desertification, land degradation and drought, in line with the vision of a sustainable, inclusive and resilient recovery.

In the past three years, Italian Cooperation has funded more than 140 initiatives in these areas for over 200 million euros. The Ministry for Ecological Transition, for its part, is supporting an important project in the Sahel that will be implemented with UNCCD support in Burkina Faso, Niger and Ghana with the aim of restoring territories by generating sustainable economic activities. (@OnuItalia)

OnuItalia
OnuItaliahttps://onuitalia.com
Il giornale Italiano delle Nazioni Unite. Ha due redazioni, una a New York, l’altra a Roma.

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