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Conservation Research Institute

 

'Gone with the Wind' - Organised crime and the geography of wind farms in Italy

Speaker: Dr Davide Luca, Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge


Abstract: The adoption of low-carbon energy sources is considered as one of the key policies to tackle climate change and, to this aim, many European governments have been supporting the transition to renewable energy through subsidies. Growing anecdotal evidence suggests that the generosity of incentives has attracted the interests of corrupt politicians and criminal organisations, as the sector offer attractive opportunities for mafias to benefit from generous public grants and tax subsidies and to launder illegal money via legal business structures. Yet, no academic research has systematically explored the link between organised crime and the renewable energy sector at the local level. In ‘Gone with the wind’, Dr Davide Luca and Alessio Romarri aim to fill this gap. The analysis features innovative GIS data on the geo-location of wind farms across Italy and on the local presence of mafia groups. Preliminary findings confirm how, in mafia-ridden regions, local criminal presence is strongly associated with a higher likelihood of hosting at least a plant.

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All welcome; please register to be provided with the Zoom details.

Date: 
Thursday, 26 November, 2020 - 13:00