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CO2alizione Italia: not just a declaration of intent

Date: 23/06/2022

More than sixty Italian companies have formalised their commitment and made an alliance for climate neutrality


Atmospheric concentrations of CO2 and other major greenhouse gases represent the greatest threat to the health of the planet and the species living on it. To keep faith with the agreement reached at the 21st Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 21), held in Paris in December 2015, the European Commission presented at the end of 2019 the European Green Deal with the goal of limiting global warming to +1.5° compared to the pre-industrial period and achieving climate neutrality within 2050.[1]


In 2020, all 27 Member States approved this proposal, taking responsibility for reducing net emissions to at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels[2]. By adopting a legislative package containing a series of proposals on climate, energy, transport and taxation, the EU will become the first climate-neutral continent[3].


However, in order to reach the ambitious goals that the EU and then Italy, by the Constitutional Law No. 1 of 11 February 2022[4], have set, it’s necessary that everyone acts promptly and synergistically. The involvement of the private sector, no matter the size or type of production, thus becomes indispensable.


Co2alizione Italia makes explicit the will of more than sixty companies, that NATIVA has converged, to formally bind themselves, through the adoption of the Benefit Corporation status or an equivalent statutory modification, to preserve climatic balance. By joining this initiative, whose launch event was organised on June 15 in Rome, the companies have committed to implement a transition to a climate-neutral economy and to transparently reporting on their actions by drawing up an Impact Report.


This is a key point, as Maria Paola Chiesi, Shared Value & Sustainability Head of the Chiesi Group, emphasised: "We are convinced that comprehensive and durable standards and measurement frameworks are essential to encourage and track progress towards a zero-emission society, as they enable companies to plan and implement specific actions, and help citizens and policy makers to identify mitigation measures that really make the difference."


In line with this philosophy, Chiesi, the largest biopharmaceutical group in the world certified B Corp, monitors its progress through the Impact Report and the Annual & Sustainability Report, setting itself more challenging goals each year. "Given the primary importance of climate change, we have taken steps to define an action plan to reduce our emissions as much as possible. To do this, firstly we studied this very complex matter, avoiding superficial statements and creating the #ActionOverWords campaign[5]” – Maria Paola Chiesi continues.


After realising that a significant part of the impact stemmed from the products, given the high climate-changing effect of the propellant gases in the inhalers required to deliver the asthma and COPD drugs, Chiesi invested in a re-engineering process by introducing a new propellant with low global warming potential.


It is a business case that well exemplifies the fact that profits can be created while acting in a “shared value” perspective, which means generating a measured and certified positive impact on people, society, territory and planet. And if the member companies of CO2alizione Italia have demonstrated that it is workable to cut greenhouse gas emissions, maintaining excellent economic results and without excessive costs, the hope is that a knock-on effect will be generated and more companies will soon take part in the initiative.


[1] European Commission, “A European Green Deal”, https://ec.europa.eu/info/strategy/priorities-2019-2024/european-green-deal_en, 2019. (Last accessed: June 20, 2022)

[2] Ibidem.

[3] European Commission, “Delivering the European Green Deal”, https://ec.europa.eu/info/strategy/priorities-2019-2024/european-green-deal/delivering-european-green-deal_en, 2021. (Last accessed: June 20, 2022)

[4] Dipartimento per le Riforme Istituzionali, “La riforma costituzionale in materia di tutela dell’ambiente”, https://www.riformeistituzionali.gov.it/it/la-riforma-costituzionale-in-materia-di-tutela-dell-ambiente/, 2021. (Last accessed: June 20, 2022)

[5] cf https://actionoverwords.org/