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Refugees Got Talent: UN-backed show aims to change perceptions
23 June 2019 - A teenage poet from Nigeria, a reggae singer from Sierra Leona, and a Colombian dancer were among those competing in Sicily ... in a UN-backed talent show aimed at reshaping the narrative around migrants. Refugees Got Talent, the first event of its kind to be held on an international level, featured dozens of people seeking shelter from war-torn countries ... 'Seeing the talent here is a powerful reminder that refugees are people like all others -- unique and talented with a lot to offer the world,' said Marco Rotunno, a press officer in Sicily for the United Nations high commissioner for refugees (UNHCR). (more)

Italy's Terna to spend record sums on grid for shift to renewables
21 March 2019 - Italy's Terna said on Thursday (21 March) it would spend a record 6.2 billion euros ($7.1 billion) on its power grid to deal with the shift toward the production of more renewable energy. 'The energy transition process is moving faster than expected and renewables and the phasing out of fossil fuels will have a major impact,' Chief Executive Luigi Ferraris told analysts. (more)

Milan, Italy: The grey city is going green
10 January 2019 - Milan, the city of Italian fashion and the economic capital of the country, is going green. Local authorities have announced plans to plant 3 million trees by 2030, believing that the increase in greenery will have a positive effect on the quality of air, and consequently on the health of the people. According to Italian media, the city's authorities are planning to create 20 new urban parks, to extend the already existing ones, and to make the most out of discarded areas like an abandoned freight railway network which will be turned into seven parks. Trees will also be planted in more than 2,000 schoolyards and in private gardens, parking lots will be reconverted into parks, and greenery will be also planted on flat rooftops, with 10 million square meters already fit for the project. (more)

Italy: Mini electric buses back in Rome
19 December 2018 - Rome wants to make a new start with small electric buses. The new plan involves the deployment of 25 electric minibuses ... in the Italian capital starting in spring 2019 and set to increase to 60 vehicles by 2020. The electric buses are especially suited to the narrow streets of the historic old town. (more)

Organic farmers protecting Italy's rich food tradition
22 November 2018 - Italian landscape architect-turned-hobby farmer Cristiano del Toro is dedicated to reviving old ways of farming. Now it seems increasing numbers of Italian farmers and consumers are coming around to Civilta Contadina's way of thinking. With a total turnover of euro 31.5 billion in 2017, agriculture is still a major economic sector in Italy and organic farming is expanding rapidly. Between 2010 and 2016, the number of organic farmers grew by 53 percent. (more)

Authorities show off extraordinary discovery of Roman coins
10 September 2018 - Italian authorities are unveiling the 'epochal' discovery of hundreds of Roman-era gold coins that were found during excavations to build a new apartment building in northern Italy. Construction crews digging in the historic center of Como discovered the small stone jar containing about 300 coins last week. Culture Minister Alberto Bonisoli said the coins, believed to date from 474 B.C., were extraordinary but still not fully understood ... (more)

Italy: Hundreds of Roman gold coins found in basement of old theater
9 September 2018 - Archaeologists are studying a valuable trove of old Roman coins found on the site of a former theater in northern Italy. The coins, at least 300 of them, date back to the late Roman imperial era and were found in a soapstone jar unearthed in the basement of the Cressoni Theater in Como, north of Milan. Archaeologists also uncovered a golden bar inside the jar. The Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities did not place a value on the coins. But reports in the Italian media suggest they could be worth millions of dollars. (more)

Ethiopian migrant brings the Italian hills alive with the sound of goats
20 July 2018 - Agitu Idea Gudeta has built up a thriving business in her adopted Italy making goat's cheese and beauty products in just a few years since fleeing her native Ethiopia in 2010 over a land dispute. Her experience is a shining example of what migrants can achieve, given half a chance. (more)

Solaris to deliver 30 electric buses to Milan
4 June 2018 - Polish busmaker Solaris has received a large order from Milan, where the city's transport operator ATM has signed a contract with an option for 80 electric buses. The first 30 are set to arrive by mid-2019. ...Whilst Milan operates trolley buses as well and has a longstanding relationship with Solaris, the new electric buses will run through the old town powered by their 45 kWh batteries. (more)

Monument-filled, traffic-clogged Rome to ban diesel cars by 2024
28 February 2018 - Rome, one of Europe's most traffic-clogged cities and home to thousands of ancient outdoor monuments threatened by pollution, plans to ban diesel cars from the center by 2024, its mayor said. diesel, according to industry figures. Rome has no major industries, so nearly all of the air pollution in the Italian capital is caused by motor vehicles. (more)

Success of Maharishi's Programmes
Short Summaries of Top Stories

Italy: Bob Roth, David Lynch Foundation CEO, to keynote at 2018 Global Wellness Summit - October
19 July 2018 - The Global Wellness Summit (GWS), the annual gathering of leaders and visionaries to positively impact and shape the future of the US$3.7 trillion global wellness economy, has announced that Bob Roth, CEO of the non-profit David Lynch Foundation and one of the world's top experts on meditation, will keynote at the conference taking place 6-8 October in Cesena, Italy. Over the past 45 years, Roth has taught Transcendental Meditation (TM), a simple, evidence-based technique to calm the mind, to many thousands of people: from at-risk youth and inmates to CEOs, military leaders, and celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Hugh Jackman, Katy Perry, Ellen DeGeneres, and Jerry Seinfeld. 'I'm excited to share new research findings and insights into why meditation needs to come out of the realm of philosophy and be categorized as serious and scientific medicine for the 21st century,' Roth said. (more)

Katy Perry, Bob Roth address international Vatican conference - 'Unite to Cure: A Global Health Care Initiative' - on Transcendental Meditation
4 May 2018 - On Saturday, 28 April, Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation (DLF), and world-renowned pop music star Katy Perry addressed the world's leading scientists and physicians, patients, ethicists and leaders of faith, government officials and philanthropists on the subject of Transcendental Meditation, at the international 'Unite To Cure: A Global Health Care Initiative' conference at the Vatican. The Cura Foundation's 4th International Conference was designed to 'create an open discussion and help speed cures for patients all over the world'. Roth, an expert on Transcendental Meditation, spoke about DLF's work bringing TM to at-risk youth worldwide. Katy Perry described the many good effects she has experienced in her life from practising Transcendental Meditation since 2010. (more)

Italy: Conference in Milan presents success of Consciousness-Based Education
7 May 2014 - The 1,500 seat conference venue was filled to capacity for the recent Scuola Senza Stress conference in Milan, Italy. The large audience was drawn to learn from distinguished education experts from Italy, the USA, and the UK, all about how Consciousness-Based Education can create 'stress-free schools', transforming the lives of students, educators, and families in Italy. The conference was endorsed by local officials in Milan, including Dr Guido Podesta, President of Milan Province, who gave the introductory speech at the conference, and also spoke in support of Stress-Free-Schools at an inaugural press conference held at the provincial palace. The Album of Events page of Global Good News is currently featuring a series of photos from this event. (more)

Italy: Educators present Stress-Free Schools to administrators, faculty, students, parents in Milan
5 February 2014 - The purpose of the recent Scuola Senza Stress (Stress-Free Schools) conference in Milan was to show how implementing Consciousness-Based Education could create stress-free schools, transforming the lives of students, educators, and families in Italy. The 1,500 seat hall was at near capacity for the event. Highlights of the conference were talks by educators, including Dr Ashley Deans, a long-time expert in Consciousness-Based Education, who described the benefits of incorporating the programme in schools. Giovanna Finocchiaro, pioneer of Scuola Senza Stress in Italy, shared her experiences with the programme at a school in Sicily. (more)

Italy: Local television interviews David Lynch about cinema, Consciousness-Based Education
5 February 2014 - In 2005 filmmaker David Lynch established the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace to ensure that every child, anywhere in the world, who wanted to learn Transcendental Meditation could do so. In Milan for the recent Stress-Free Schools conference, Mr Lynch was invited to appear on a popular local television channel. During the interview he spoke about the cinema as well as several of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's programmes to improve the quality of life both for individuals and the society--Transcendental Meditation, Consciousness-Based Education, and Stress-Free Schools. (more)

Italy: Stress-Free Schools conference draws Milan officials' praise for Consciousness-Based Education
5 February 2014 - A recent conference in Milan, Italy, focused on the effectiveness of Consciousness-Based Education, including the practice of Transcendental Meditation, in creating 'Stress-Free Schools'--Scuola Senza Stress--and transforming the lives of students, families, and the community as a whole. Distinguished speakers from Italy, the UK, and the USA included provincial president Guido Podesta, filmmaker David Lynch, founder of the David Lynch Foundation, which presented the conference at the provincial palace, and Giovanna Finocchiaro, a schoolteacher in Sicily and the pioneer of Stress-Free Schools in Italy. (more)

Milan, Italy: David Lynch talks Stress-Free Schools - Scuola Senza Stress - to promote harmony, peace
5 February 2014 - On a recent visit to Italy, world-renowned filmmaker David Lynch spoke at a conference about Stress-Free Schools, gave a live presentation about the conference on a nationally broadcast television programme, and met with local people who practise Transcendental Meditation. Everywhere his message was the same--encouraging implementation of Consciousness-Based Education in schools to promote national peace, harmony, and prosperity. (more)

Italy: Expanding programmes support development of consciousness and better quality of life
17 July 2013 - In the past year several new developments unfolded to improve the quality of life for Italians. A course in Maharishi Vedic Organic Agriculture was offered, more students enjoyed Consciousness-Based Education, and news of the Transcendental Meditation programme began to reach a wider audience across the country. (more)

Italy: National assemblies deepen knowledge and experience of meditation
17 July 2013 - In the past year, two large national assemblies in Italy have given people who practise Transcendental Meditation special opportunities to deepen their understanding of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's Vedic Science. At the same time participants enjoyed creating a coherent, peaceful influence in the environment while accelerating their development of consciousness through group practice of Transcendental Meditation and its advanced technologies of consciousness. The assemblies were held in Castel San Pietro Terme, a renowned spa town near Bologna, in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy. (more)

Italy: Physicians take in-depth training in Maharishi Ayur-Veda health care
17 July 2013 - Fifteen medical doctors in Italy have concluded the second year of a three-year training course for health professionals in Maharishi Ayur-Veda health care. (more)

Short Summaries of Top Stories

'Lucifer' heat wave holds Italy, eastern Europe in fiery grip
4 August 2017 - Swathes of southern and eastern Europe sweltered in temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius (104°F) on Friday in a heat wave nicknamed 'Lucifer' that has fanned forest fires, triggered weather warning alerts, and damaged crops. Italy and the Balkans were worst affected, though areas as far north as southern Poland also basked in abnormally hot temperatures, and European weather hub Meteoalarm issued its highest grade 'red' warnings for 10 countries. (more)

Opium numbs the pain for Indian pickers exploited on Italian farms
19 July 2017 - For almost three years, Amandeep started most of his working days eating opium and ended them smoking heroin. In between he picked watermelons for up to 13 hours a day in what activists say are exploitative conditions faced by thousands of Indian labourers in Italy's Pontine Marshes, just south of Rome. About 30,000 Indians, mainly Sikhs from Punjab state, live in the Pontine Marshes, a region that Italy's fascist regime drained for agriculture in the 1930s. Most work as labourers and over the last decade many have been forced to work for virtually nothing to pay off debts to agents who promised good jobs and organised travel from India. This is known as debt bondage -- the most prevalent form of modern-day slavery worldwide according to the United Nations. As many as 46 million people are estimated to be enslaved globally ... A growing number of these labourers [Indian workers] are taking drugs to cope with long hours, poor conditions and very low pay, according to interviews with workers, doctors, police, and rights groups. . . . At least one worker told a mobile health clinic that he wanted to quit but found it difficult as poppy use was 'strongly encouraged' on his farm. (more)

Flowers shrivel in Italian beauty spot as drought follows quakes
18 July 2017 - The plain of Castelluccio in central Italy usually rolls out a carpet of red, yellow, and blue flowers for tourists, but this summer drought is shriveling the blooms in a valley already ravaged by a series of earthquakes. (more)

Heat and drought feed wildfires in Italy, beaches near Rome threatened
17 July 2017 - Italian firefighters fought more than 1,000 wildfires on Monday (17 July) amid high temperatures and drought, including three near Rome's beach neighborhood of Ostia, the fire brigade said. With half the average rainfall last month and temperatures higher than normal, occasionally touching 40 degrees Celsius in the south, fields and forests have turned into perfect kindling, the national agricultural association Coldiretti said. (more)

Italy quake toll hits 250 as rescuers search flattened towns
26 August 2016 - The death toll from a devastating earthquake in central Italy climbed to 250 on Thursday (25 August) as rescue teams scoured mounds of rubble for a second day in towns and villages flattened by the natural disaster. The 6.2 magnitude quake struck a cluster of mountain communities 140 km (85 miles) east of Rome early on Wednesday (24 August) as people slept, destroying hundreds of homes. Italy sits on two fault lines, making it one of the most seismically active countries in Europe. (more)

Costa Concordia captain Francesco Schettino sparks outrage by giving seminar on 'managing panic' at Sapienza Rome university
6 August 2014 - The Sapienza University of Rome has found itself at the centre of controversy after it emerged Francesco Schettino, the captain of the doomed Costa Concordia, was invited to speak at an event organised by a university professor on 'managing panic'. Italian newspaper La Nazione reports that Schettino, currently on trial for charges of manslaughter and abandoning ship, described himself an 'expert' on panic management in times of crisis as he spoke at the end of a limited access session held off the campus and organised by professor Vincenzo Mastronardi who teaches at the University's Faculty of Medicine. Schettino, who allegedly refused repeated orders to get back on the Concordia while as many as 300 passengers remained trapped on board, spoke after a 3D reconstruction of the sinking of the ship was shown. He allegedly told the newspaper: 'I was invited as an expert -- I know how you behave in these situations. Besides, I have travelled in all the seas of the world, I know how you are supposed to react with ethnically diverse crews.' (more)

Mortality rates higher in Italy's toxic 'Land of Fires'
4 July 2014 - Mortality rates are higher in the Campanian toxic-waste-burning zone the Land of Fires and around the polluting ILVA steel plant in Taranto than in the rest of Italy, the Higher Health Institute (ISS) has confirmed. In the Land of Fires near Naples mortality rates compared to the rest of Campania are 10 per cent higher for men and 13 per cent higher for women, the ISS said. In Taranto infant mortality is 21 per cent higher than in the rest of Puglia, it said. (more)

Italy: Eco-mafia earned 15 bn euros in 2013
11 June 2014 - An average of over three environmental infractions were committed in Italy every hour last year, reported the Italian environmental association Legambiente on Wednesday. In discussing its 2014 report, the group noted that 29,274 infractions were committed in 2013, that revenue from the crimes topped 15 billion euros and that 321 organized crimes groups had been involved. The financial takings from environmental crimes was down from some 16 billion euros the previous year, though profits from illegal special waste management remained at 3.1 billion euros and illegal building was still at 1.7 billion. (more)

Multi-million-euro corruption scandal in Venice
4 June 2014 - The mayor of Venice was among 35 people arrested Wednesday in an unfolding multi-million-euro corruption scandal, one that includes a Berlusconi-era minister in an alleged scheme that funneled bribes to political campaigns through the lagoon city's flood-protection system over the course of a decade. At the centre of the alleged bribery web is Consorzio Venezia Nuova, a consortium of private and government entities responsible for safeguarding the Venetian lagoon, which includes MOSE, a 5.5-billion-euro system of retractable flood barriers set for completion in 2016 after years of delays. The MOSE investigation comes as investigators probe other graft allegations in northern Italy. Last month police uncovered a suspected criminal network that organised bribes in exchange for contracts to work for Milan Expo 2015, or the World's Fair. Both cases have put pressure on Premier Renzi, who appointed an anti-corruption czar in response to the Expo scandal and growing popular disenchantment with the ruling class. (more)

Migrant boat carrying hundreds sinks south of Sicily, at least 14 dead
12 May 2014 - Italian naval and coast guard vessels recovered 14 bodies and rescued around 200 people after a migrant boat sank in the sea between Libya and southern Sicily, authorities said on Monday, a day after dozens were drowned in a similar incident. Italy has struggled for decades with a stream of migrants travelling in small, unsafe boats from North Africa to the islet of Lampedusa, midway between Tunisia and Sicily. The influx of migrants has grown since the Arab Spring upheavals of 2011 and the protracted civil war in Syria. An Italian navy statement said two naval and two coast guard patrol boats and a vessel from the Guardia di Finanza customs police had joined the rescue operation on Monday and medical assistance was being provided to survivors. On Sunday, at least 40 people died and 51 others were rescued after a boat carrying migrants mostly from sub-Saharan Africa sank off Libya's coast east of Tripoli. Hundreds of migrants were drowned in two separate disasters last year that prompted the Italian government to step up air and marine patrols of the seas south of Sicily. (more)


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