ITALY: Salesian Pontifical University in Rome launches energy efficiency project
University to save 230 tons of CO2 emissions per year, equivalent to planting 580 new trees
(MissionNewswire) The Salesian Pontifical University in Rome has launched an energy efficiency project to reduce energy consumption and utilize renewable sources throughout the campus. At the end of 2021, the university joined the “Laudato Si’ Initiative Platform” promoted by Pope Francis to raise awareness and increase action on the values of integral ecology.
Thanks to Global Power Service, the university installed a system of photovoltaic panels for the production of clean energy. It will also replace the current six thermal power plants with new generation energy-efficient equipment. As a result, the university will save 230 tons of CO2 emissions per year, equivalent to planting 580 new trees. The university is also committed to reducing the use of plastic, dematerializing paper documents and installing electric vehicle recharging stations.
Father Andrea Bozzolo, rector magnificus of Salesian Pontifical University, said, “We want to work on the hearts and minds of our children, who are highly sensitive to environmental issues and eager to work, to generate skills, especially educational, so that a new relationship with creation is born, takes root and spreads.”
Fr. Bozzolo noted that change will be made through a series new of behaviors. He said, “It is not only the big projects that make the difference but the small daily gestures that each of us can put into practice. This is also why we have decided to reduce the consumption of plastic, to change the water dispensers in the bathrooms, to move toward energy saving, the recycling of food waste. Too often in our gestures, there is already an offense to the environment; we keep the water on or the light on when not needed, thinking we are not doing anything wrong! Awareness is lacking and what we are trying to do is to educate the younger generations to change their mentality and spirituality.”
Salesian programs across Italy help youth who are unable to attend school and others who drop out to work at the few jobs available to them. A growing number of children work as laborers on farms and others have turned to the sex trade to help support their families. Those in poverty often live without adequate shelter, hot water, regular meals and health care.
Poverty rose sharply in 2020 to its highest level in 15 years as the COVID-19 crisis brought economic challenges for much of the country. Close to 5.6 million people or 9.4 percent of the population are living in absolute poverty unable to buy goods or services to achieve a minimally acceptable standard of living, according to the World Bank. This number includes 1.3 million minors.
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Salesian Missions – Italy
World Bank – Italy