Green Train 2020, a journey in 13 stages to speak about Climate Change

The Legambiente and Italian State Railway campaign is back and has reached its 32nd edition. This year, the subject is Change Climate Change, to talk about the effects of the climate crisis, from South to North, and best practices for stopping it

Extremely intense and frequent climatic events are also affecting Italy. It is an emergency that brings with it more and more obvious effects on climate change throughout the Italian Peninsula. Yet each of us, in our own small way, can contribute to contrasting these events, primarily through actions and lifestyles that are more environmentally sustainable.  Hence, theTreno Verde 2020 Change Climate Change challenge aims to change climate change. From South to North, from 17 February to 1 April, the historic itinerant campaign promoted by Legambiente  and by the FS Italiane Group, under the patronage of the Ministry for Environment, Land and Sea Protection, will cross Italy to talk about the effects of the phenomenon and also the best practices put in place to stop it.

The initiative, which starts in Calabria and ends in Liguria, will be organised, as always, in stages: there will be thirteen stages in the 32nd edition, which aims to invert the tendency, starting with the name. It is a topic that is closely linked to the web platform launched by the environmentalist association, Change Climate Change, a useful space not only for learning about the evolution and the effects of the climate emergency, but also for providing citizens with tools that will allow them to make a difference through their small daily actions.

The train will stop at the stations of Lamezia Terme (Catanzaro) (17 and 18 February), Agrigento (from 20 to 22 February), Potenza (25 and 26 February), Bari (28 and 29 February), Torre Annunziata (Naples) (from 2 to 4 March), Rome Ostiense (from  5 to 7 March), Pescara (9 and 10 March), Ancona (12 and 13 March), Pisa (from 15 to 17 March), Ravenna (from 19 to 21 March), Verona Porta Nuova (23 and 24 March), Milan Porta Garibaldi (from 26 to 28 March), Genoa Piazza Principe (from 30 March to 1 April). A journey also made possible thanks to the partners supporting the campaign, AzzeroCO2 and Ricrea (National Consortium for recycling and recovery of steel packaging), and the partners Ecowell, Formaperta, Zeropac and Italia Zuccheri. The media partner of the Treno Verde is La Nuova Ecologia.

Environmental education, scientific monitoring and insights will characterize the route on board the Treno Verde 2020, inside which a special exhibition will be set up for training and raising awareness among students and citizens of all ages. From major environmental issues to projects to make Italy a better country, the 2020 edition also includes several thematic meetings, moments in which citizens, stakeholders and administrations can connect with each other. The aim? To achieve a widespread presence in the territories, in order to create a link between the global issue and local action.

In fact, the fight against climate change can no longer allow any further postponements or setbacks. This is also demonstrated by the numbers collected by Legambiente. Today, six Italian regions have declared a climate and environmental emergency - Friuli Venezia Giulia, Puglia, Tuscany, Liguria, Emilia-Romagna and Marche - along with 88 Municipalities, from Sicily to the Aosta Valley, and have declared the emergency or introduced a motion to declare it. In 2019, the environmentalist association recorded 157 extreme climate events in Italy, with 42 victims, 85 cases of flooding caused by heavy rainfall, 54 cases of damage due to whirlwinds, five landslides due to heavy rainfall and 16 river overflows, but 2020 has not started off in the best of ways. Since the beginning of the year, there have been two cases of damage caused by whirlwinds, in Paternò (Catanzaro) and Salerno, and two cases of flooding due to heavy rainfall, in Formia (Latina) and San Martino Valle Caudina (Avellino). In recent weeks, there have been strong winds that exceeded 100 km/h in Trentino Alto Adige (reaching 165 km/h high up in the mountains) and in Abruzzo, where they reached 175 km/h on the Gran Sasso, along with unseasonable temperatures of over 25 degrees C. On a global level, last month was the hottest January ever, beating the January 2016 record. There is also a drought alert in Basilicata, where, on 31 January, the dams recorded the lowest water levels in the last 30 years. January 2020 was also the driest in Sicily's historyRecord heat has also been recorded in Sardinia in recent days, where thermometers showed temperatures of 27 degrees C: a temperature never reached before on the Island in February.

Facilitating an interactive approach to the problem is the key chosen to involve the younger visitors of the Treno Verde 2020, while the viewpoint proposed to describe it is two-fold: on the one hand, narration through disputes and environmental conflicts (the "enemies of the climate"), while on the other, the best practices (the “friends of the climate”). Workshops are planned, as well as Youth Climate Meetings, cineforums and moments dedicated to and managed by the youngsters themselves. In several stages of the Green Train 2020, Italferr, an engineering company in the FS Italiane Group, will use a mobile laboratory to measure noise and air quality. The parameters monitored to evaluate the environmental conditions will involve some of the substances most responsible for pollution in urban areas, like particulates (Pm10 and Pm2.5) and nitrogen oxides (NOx, NO2 and NO). To provide an accurate interpretation of the assessments, weather parameters such as wind direction and speed, temperature, humidity, solar radiation, rainfall and atmospheric pressure will also be measured.

To confirm the importance of innovation also with regard to sustainability, projects by both the FS Group and by start-up companies addressing extremely urgent and current issues related to climate change and more generally to environmental sustainability will be presented during the stages of the Treno Verde 2020. For example, air purification, electrical and shared mobility for first and last mile journeys, monitoring and optimisation of energy consumption.

The exhibition itinerary

Four themes, all complementary to each other and linked to the climate crisis, will characterise the activities in each of the Treno Verde's carriages. In the first carriage, the climate emergency is GLOBAL and INTERCONNECTED, with a space dedicated to a general analysis of the causes and effects of the phenomenon; on board the second carriage, the solution is LOCAL and INTERCONNECTED and brings to the table the answers for tackling the emergency in the single territories; in the third, a  #RE-EVOLUTION will save us, a space dedicated to the new generation who have taken to the streets in order to save the Planet; lastly, the fourth starts with the question – What can we do? – to make us reflect on the importance of choices made in everyday life, from our consumption and behaviour to the importance of information and direct commitment.

The train journey in real time

On various web and social media channels, it will be possible to obtain information and follow the journey of the Treno Verde 2020 in real time. The official website of the campaign, , will be updated every day with the individual stages, while the journey on board will be described through the dedicated Legambiente social media channels, on  FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube pages and through the official hashtags #greentrain and #changeclimatechange.