September 28, 2021
On Sunday, 15.58 % of Trentino voters voted: participation was much lower than the 40 % required by the quorum. Let’s look at the mathematics: of the 437,113 voters, 68,081 went to the polls. Specifically, 31,185 males and 36,896 females . Of these, 65,652 voted in favor. In other words, 96.96 % of those who voted crossed the “yes” box .
Let us now look at the geographical position of municipalities with higher and lower turnouts. Looking at districts or macro areas the highest is Val di Sole (21.37 % of the electorate), then the Giudicarie (17.35 % of the electorate) and the Alta Valsugana and Bernstol (17.25 % of the electorate). Whereas looking at the large pool of votes, 16.26 % and 16.48 % of voters respectively voted in the cities of Trento and Rovereto, equivalent to 14,964 and 5,152 citizens .
The defeat is clear but it gives hope that more than 65,000 Trentino citizens have confidence and want a more sustainable type of agriculture in this area. Personally, I did not expect more than a 10 % turnout at the polling stations, given the deafening silence of Trentino politics . As stated by Lucia Pavesi , the reasons for the defeat could also be technical-strategic (e.g., the lack of initial involvement of producers and some existing organic farming districts and insufficient publicity). Nevertheless, the courage of the proposers of the initiative was enormous. Publicly addressing one of the most consolidated (contaminating) sectors of Trentino was a heroic gesture.
Fig. 1: Land use in Piana Rotaliana is mainly wine and apple farms alternated with light industrial districts and urban settlements (photo by © Matteo Ianeselli / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15615268).
 Scozzari, C. (2021, September 27). Trento, flop del referendum sul biodistretto. Il passaggio al biologico può attendere. la Repubblica. https://www.repubblica.it/green-and-blue/2021/09/27/news/trento_flop_del_referendum_sul_biodistretto_il_passaggio_al_biologico_puo_attendere-319636683/
 Pianesi, L. (2021, September 27). Referendum per il Biodistretto, una sconfitta senza appello che affonda il biologico per il futuro? Come un autogol può trasformarsi in un’opportunità. il Dolomiti. http://www.bkoffice.ildolomiti.it/societa/referendum-per-il-biodistretto-una-sconfitta-senza-appello-che-affonda-il-biologico-per-il-futuro-come-un-autogol-puo-trasformarsi-in-unopportunita
 Andreazza, L. (2021, September 26). Referendum biodistretto del Trentino, l’affluenza si ferma lontana dal quorum: Alle urne il 15,58% degli aventi diritto. il Dolomiti. https://www.ildolomiti.it/politica/2021/referendum-biodistretto-del-trentino-laffluenza-si-ferma-lontana-dal-quorum-alle-urne-il-1558-degli-aventi-diritto
 Miller, M. L. (2021, September 24). Who stands for the organic district referendum? GreenMarked. https://greenmarked.it/it/standing-for-the-organic-district/
Cover photo: free-source photo by sweetlouise on Pixabay.
This article is part of the project “Environmental Blogging Boost 4 Students”, aimed at increasing the spread of agroecology and sustainable water management in Trentino. The project is financed by the BIM Adige Water Catchments Consortium (grant approved by provision n. 100 of June 06, 2021).