The TECUM International Conference was held in Rome at Carabinieri Officers School on 6th and 7th May.
The Conference, which represents a pillar for the implementation of the Project, has addressed the most important challenges in order to fight environmental crime with contributes from national and international experts.
During the first panel, the Italian Minister of the Foreign Affairs and the representatives of FAO, CITES and UNEP have explained the importance of the environmental protection in order to guarantee stability and security, underlining how fighting environmental crimes is not only an ethic obligation but also a political and financial issue, being related to the emerging issue of climate change. Moreover, in the second part of this panel, environmental crime’s consequences to security has been deeply examined, with a particular attention to the role of waste policy and management in Europe, thanks to the highly qualified contribution of the representative of the European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, who has strongly underlined the importance of cooperation and coordination among European police forces, and the NATO Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges
National associations, universities and technical experts on environment participated in the afternoon to the roundtable about the need of a simpler and more effective legislation in order to prevent environmental crime, considering also the organized crime profile and the profile of environmental crimes as “corporate crimes”, following the definition of Mr. Franco Roberti. Relevant speeches were given by Roberto Pennisi (Deputy Attorney Antimafia and Counter-terrorism National Bureau) and Fr. Luigi Ciotti (President of Libera). Mr. Pennisi explained how the environmental crimes represent an increasing threat to European security, because of undervaluing the links between environmental and financial crimes.
The need of a common legislation, starting from definitions and legislative backgrounds, has been strengthened during the panel dedicated to protection and perspectives. The representatives from UNODC, EUROPOL, EUROJUST and INTERPOL have addressed the failure of a transnational operative strategy in order to fight against environmental crime, underlining how much important is the approach promoted with the TECUM Project. They have enhanced the necessity to share standardized methodologies and information in order to prosecute organized crime groups active on environmental crimes. In addition, they explained that international cooperation is the only way to be more effective and incisive countering environmental crime, enhancing the national experience in order to build an international paradigm of police operation in the aim of the TECUM Project.
The Conference has been the occasion to announce the reorganization of National Forestry Corps within the Carabinieri Corps. Connecting the capabilities of the State Forestry Corps with those of the Carabinieri Command for the Environment Protection and Agriculture and Food will lead to the creation of an hub of excellence in the field of the protection of the environment as a unicum at an European level, moving in the direction stated by INTERPOL and EUROPOL.
In conclusion, following the speech of the Carabinieri Corps General Commander, Liutenant General Tullio Del Sette, TECUM International Conference has been a fundamental step in promoting the harmonization of European approach and the enhancement of the specialization of law enforcement agencies against environmental crime, thanks to the contributions of national and international authorities and highly qualified panellists.