Wild cutting of pine trees in Rende, Italia Nostra: “A green plan is needed”

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By John

That wild cut just doesn’t go down. «Last Saturday the Municipal Administration (Prefectural Commissioners) of Rende proceeded to cut down the pine trees present in the municipal area along Via Don Minzoni, despite complaints and protests from citizens and associations. The felling plan includes around 90 trees!”, say the leaders of Italia Nostra, architect Carlo De Giacomo (national councilor) and architect Angelo Malatacca (president of the Regional Council of Calabria). “The appraisal drawn up by an agronomist motivated the felling of the pines because “they no longer fulfill their original ornamental and aesthetic-visual function”. Furthermore, this appraisal was carried out on the basis of “VTA method (Visual Tree Assessment), by visual inspection of the defects and vitality of dangerous and no longer functional pine plants, despite being in apparently normal plant conditions…” Now, the Council of State, with sentence no. 9178/2022, marks a historic stage in the protection and safeguarding of trees in general. The highest body of administrative justice in our country highlights how fundamental a serious reason for felling a tree is, linked to actual phytosanitary and stability problems of the specimen which are amply documented by a series of instrumental technical assessments and not only through visual evaluation, a very important measure in the management of urban greenery because it avoids the felling of a perfectly healthy tree if there is no scientific certainty and the existence of a potential risk to public safety. But there is more, “The Guidelines for the management of urban greenery” of the Ministry of the Environment, Law 10/2013 “Regulations for the development of urban spaces” should have “guided” the work of the municipal administration, also and above all in consideration of the requests of citizens and associations. In our opinion, the Municipality’s provision of a “Green Plan” can no longer be postponed, in compliance with the indications of Law 10/2013, i.e. by drawing up: A green census; The Green Regulations; The Green Plan. “To these, traditionally considered, we must add, possibly every year, the greenery monitoring and management plan, as a decision-making support for the municipal administration, fundamental for the planning of the interventions to be carried out in the 12 months, at least those of ordinary management of the greenery public green areas, even in the temporary absence of the other tools mentioned above, to ensure citizens have the necessary services that can only be performed with well-managed urban green areas”.