SIN is a photographic documentation project that focuses on topical issues like pollution and environmental protection. In Italy there are 12,482 potentially contaminated areas; 38 are considered highly polluted. Indeed, the “Ronchi decree” (1997) established to distinguish and declare them Sites of National Interest (S.I.N.). The work concerns three SINs located in central Italy: Bussi sul Tirino and Piano d’Orta in Abruzzo; Terni and Papigno in Umbria; Orbetello in Tuscany.
Bussi sul Tirino and Piano d’Orta are two municipalities in the province of Pescara (Abruzzo), which arise near the Gran Sasso Natural Park. They present toxic waste dumps, active chemical poles, former Montecatini factories and a power plant. The soil, the subsoil and the aquifers are particularly polluted due to the spillage of mercury, lead, hydrocarbons, arsenic, etc.
Orbetello is a city in the province of Grosseto (Tuscany) which rises at the foot of Monte Argentario. It has former Montecatini factories which produced chemical fertilizers. The company’s waste was buried during its underground activity; asbestos in the polvirulent state instead prevents the reclamation.
Terni and the small hamlet of Papigno rise a few hundred meters from the famous Marmore Falls. Terni is a city founded on industry, in particular on the Steelworks, which is still active today. Papigno has former Montecatini factories, where chemical fertilizers were produced, and a huge landfill where the waste from the Terni industry is collected.
All of these sites are located near naturalistic and tourist areas; in addition, there is similar pollution. All have former factories of the Montecatini mining and chemical company (1888-1966), active or abandoned chemical poles, asbestos in a pulverized state and huge waste dumps that arise in the valleys or are stationed underground. Montecatini was founded in 1888 in Florence. The company mainly made chemical fertilizers, ammonia, sulfuric acid and other products. It ceased its activity in 1966 following its incorporation into Edison, with the consequent birth of the Montecatini Edison group, later Montedison.
Matteo Capone was born in 1997 in Rome. In 2020 he graduated in Photography in the Istituto Europeo di Design (IED) in Rome with honors. This institute allowed him to know and deep in the world of photography and to mature both as a person as an author. The visual arts have always intrigued and fascinated him indeed he chose to become a photographer to get to know different places, people and cultures, to express his feelings and to actively contribute to important social issues.
© text and pictures by Matteo Capone