Parco Italia is a forestry programme born in 2021 from the collaboration between Stefano Boeri Architetti and Fondazione AlberItalia, whose long-term ambition is to plant 22 million trees by 2040. The programme was initiated thanks to our €2 million investment from the Right Now Climate Fund – our $100 million fund to support nature-based initiatives to conserve, restore and protect the natural world.
The implementation phase of the Parco Italia forestry programme was presented in Rome, involving the planting of 70,000 trees and shrubs by the end of 2024. As of today, more than 15,000 trees have already been planted in various sites across the area, and an additional 35,000 trees will be planted by March 2024.
The initial research phase, completed in October 2023, suggested the expansion of protected areas and the simultaneous protection of natural resources, managed in such a way as to minimise the risks of fragmentation and increase ecological connectivity, are a key tool for reducing the negative effects of the loss of habitat.
It’s believed Italy should increase the percentage of protected areas by at least 8.7% by 2030 to reach the EU objective on a European scale. This is because although forested areas constitute 35% of the land surface in Italy, 25% of the territory shows high degrees of ecological fragmentation. This is also linked to the intensification of risks, such as the increase in the number and intensity of wildfires.
To address these challenges, the initial research phase, completed in October 2023, established the necessary background knowledge to design a plan for the subsequent implementation phase.
The team began by mapping all the national forestry projects, concluded and ongoing, both public and private, geolocalising more than 400 inititives in Italy. Analysing national policies and the supply chain of the forest industry, the research concluded that the current production of forest nursery stock, primarily managed by public administrations at the regional scale, is insufficient to meet the demand expected from upcoming afforestation programmes.
Parco Italia’s team has also developed a general map of the entire Italian territory, indicating the areas where forestry would have a greater impact in terms of increasing ecological connectivity and biodiversity. On a national scale, the map clearly shows a higher afforestation priority for improving ecological connectivity in the Po Plain in northern Italy, lower mountain sectors of Piedmont and Lombardy, the interior of Tuscany, some coastal areas in Marche and Lazio, and scattered locations in Campania and Sicily.
Parco Italia, starting from the best national and international afforestation guidelines, developed a unique and comprehensive guideline document for designing, planning, managing and maintaining the tree planting sites in Italy available to the public.
"Through the Right Now Climate Fund, Amazon is committed to support nature-based initiatives like Parco Italia that enable us to have a positive impact in the communities where our employees and customers live. As part of our continued investment in Italy, we are proud to support this programme in its ambitious purpose to preserve and improve the natural world in Italy,” said Mariangela Marseglia, VP and Country Manager, Amazon Italy and Spain.
In 2022, as part of the Parco Italia programme, we contributed to the planting of more than 6,000 trees in the Metropolitan City of Milan, through the Forestami pilot project. The support to Parco Italia is part of our broader commitment to nature-based initiatives around the world, operated through investments from the Right Now Climate Fund, in accordance with our Climate Pledge goal to reach net-zero carbon by 2040.
As part of the Right Now Climate Fund’s commitment to funding nature-based projects in European communities, we have already invested in a nature and wildlife restoration fund in France, a reforestation programme in Italy, an urban greening programme in Germany, a rewilding and tree planting project in the UK, and the world’s first commercial-scale seaweed farm, located between offshore wind turbines off the coast of the Netherlands.
We’ve also funded forest conservation and restoration in the Appalachian Mountains in the United States, the Agroforestry and Restoration Accelerator programme in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest, and we’re a key member of the LEAF Coalition, a new global public-private initiative to mobilise at least $1 billion to protect the world's tropical rainforests.