As the world enters a new era after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Covid-19 pandemic is still upsetting our daily lives. And as 75% of EU citizens live in urban areas, cities are the most prominent stage both for responding to the health crisis, and for seizing opportunities to recover and move forward. In 2020, EU countries agreed to Next Generation EU, a €750 billion recovery package that represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity.
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I cambiamenti climatici, la guerra e la crisi economica affamano il mondo. L’Onu: “Basta scuse: i combustibili fossili sono un vicolo cieco”.
Italy has perhaps been the swiftest country in the European Union to look southwards toward Africa in its efforts to wean itself from Russian gas.
Western nations are indeed imposing economic and political sanctions on Russia after it invaded Ukraine in late February 2022. Italy is potentially among the hardest hit as it imports about 29 billion cubic metres (bcm) of natural gas from Moscow every year —a figure second only to Germany which accounts for over 40% of its gas demands. Replacing Russia as its main gas supplier will be no mean feat.
We all have but one planet. The danger of nuclear war, climate emergency and ecological disasters mean that maintaining peace is an imperative for the very survival of humanity. Wars destabilize not only parts of our globe - they add to the universal insecurity and undermine the possibility of addressing shared threats.
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Mobility is a constantly evolving field. Until today, the success of Global Cities around the world was highly dependent on the efficiency of their infrastructures, as well as on their ability to maintain them. However, over the last two years, the coronavirus pandemic seized control of our lives, leading to substantial social and economic changes.
Smart mobility, defined for the sake of simplicity as a personalized ‘service’ available ‘on demand’, providing individuals instant access to a seamless system of clean, green, efficient, and flexible transport to meet all their needs, is a transition affecting the mobility sector, though we cannot call it a revolution yet.
After a decade of rapid growth, shared mobility has confronted new challenges with COVID-19. Shared mobility refers to transportation modes in which services and vehicles are shared among users. This includes app-based ride-hailing, carpooling, and car-sharing, as well as micro-mobility services such as bikes, e-bikes, and electric scooter fleets.
When cities reopened following months of lockdowns, they were no longer the same; or perhaps their citizens were different. Restaurants, bars, and clubs flooded outdoors, invading sidewalks and even streets or parking spaces at times. Outdoor activities increased exponentially while parks were filled with all sorts of events: yoga classes, political meetings, and actual outdoor education. Similar phenomena have occurred, at different times and in different ways, in almost every city across Europe and the world.
At the international climate change conference, COP26 in Glasgow in November 2021, the British organisers pushed for greater recognition of the impact of road transport on greenhouse gas emissions – and to present the electrification of the automotive market as the solution. Over 100 governments, businesses, investors, and civic organisations signed a declaration committing to accelerating the transition to zero-emissions vehicles.