The Italian Zeolite Premise 2/2

Italy will move from a typically “Mediterranean” climate to a sort of “subtropicalemediterraneo” hybrid. According to the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), Italy will suffer an increase of up to 25% of the water deficit due to the combination of the decrease in resources and the increase in demand, above all for agricultural use. Reducing the flow or even drying up of many large rivers (in the last decade the Po has taken on the appearance of an immense sand and gravel belt several times) and the more superficial aquifers leads to the so-called “marine inversion”. saltwater rise of the sea in the mouth of the rivers with impact on ecosystems and groundwater: in the fifties this rise was 2 – 3 km, currently it can reach up to 20 km. The majority of rainwater and irrigation agricultural soils are dispersed by surface runoff in clayey soils and by rapid drainage in soils with a high sandy content. Of the remaining subordinate part, that not used by crops is reintroduced into the hydrological system heavily polluted by nitrates, phosphorus, harmful heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides whose flow in the environment has more than doubled since 1960 (Foley, 2012). In 2015, the United Nations published a report entitled Water for a Sustainable World in which they warn that water consumption will grow by 55% by 2050 and it is therefore necessary to drastically improve the efficiency of its use especially in agriculture by investing in innovative practices with precision and more efficient techniques. (Pasotti, 2015). The widespread use of synthetic fertilizers (NPK) has shocked the chemistry of the planet by doubling the flow of nitrogen and phosphorus in ecosystems to levels of about 121 million tons of nitrogen and 9 million tons of phosphorus per year. A small part (just over 10%) of the nitrogen of fertilizers and manure waste (sewage, manure) ends up in products to be consumed (food), between 25% and 50% is washed away by rainwater and irrigates by moving in the form of nitrate in the hydrological system, the remaining part is dispersed in the atmosphere in the form of NH3 and N2O, a greenhouse gas, 300 times more harmful than carbon dioxide (Foley, 2012).

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