Excellent in energy savings, a reference point for sustainable tourism, optimal for the environmental quality of its products, Tuscany is among Italy’s most advanced regions from a green economy perspective. It is the result of an
Investigation conducted by Fondazione Impresa, a research center focused on Italian small businesses, which put all aspects relative to green economy’s seven domains under a lens in order to portray the various regions’ state of advancement in the sector, and to compile a raking of the “green” level achieved. Energy, businesses and products, agriculture, tourism, construction, mobility and waste management: these are the categories within which 21 performance indicators were collected, rewarding Trentino Alto Adige – by far Italy’s top region in terms of the development of sustainable practices, both at the production and consumption levels – and highlighting the good levels reached in the Umbria, Marche, and Tuscany regions.

Beyond any ranks, the indications that emerged from the investigation contribute to focusing on the results achieved by Tuscany on the topic of sustainability, and to suggest any potentials for development. In the energy field, there are two significant milestones that were achieved: approximately 44% of electric energy is derived from renewable resources (the Italian average is 31%), while energy savings that were certified – that is to say the Titoli di Efficienza Energetica (TEE) [Energy Efficiency Titles], which certify the achievement of energy savings in terms of the final energy use – is of 1173 kWh per inhabitant. Only the Puglia region did better, and the national average is of kWh. In contrast, the carbon intensity (the grams of carbon dioxide emitted for every Euro of real added value) is worse than the [national] average.

The environmental quality of products and businesses is good: 13 out of 100,000 businesses have a European Ecolabel license, which certifies low impact product, whereas 350 out of 100,000 businesses have the ISO 14001 certification. Tuscany places well above the Italian average in terms of surface area dedicated to biological agriculture and for the concentration of biological breeding farms and markets. Very high values for tourism as well: only 1.1% of the coastline is not suitable for swimming due to pollution, but an effort is still necessary to improve the offer of bicycle routes.

As for waste management, the investigation that was recently propagated by Fondazione Impresa indicates that the collection of sorted wastes accounts for 40% of the total, and that the percentage of waste disposed of at landfills reaches 42%, whereas Tuscany’s figure indicate room for improvement in the construction and mobility domains. As pertains to the “green” level of buildings, the statistics indicate that only 4.5 inhabitants out of 1,000 requested tax deductions based on energy redevelopment; likewise, the installed power derived from photovoltaic panels mounted on buildings that qualifies for the benefits provided by European incentives programs is well below the national average. Public transportation must also be strengthened, with number of available vehicles and the percentage of the population that makes use of them both below Italian standards.