CRANS-MONTANA, 17.05.2023 — The public-private partnership signed between AxessImpact SA, the Association of Crans-Montana Municipalities, and the Municipality of Crans-Montana marks a turning point in establishing a society that is more environmentally friendly and considers the future of future generations. The implementation of a pilot project for soil regeneration, based on combating the Oriental Bunias, highlights the benefits that a community can derive from innovative resource management.

Committed to sustainable development, AxessImpact SA and the Municipality of Crans-Montana are taking a significant step forward in private-public partnership. The company, active in financial technology, and the local administration of the Haut-Plateau are currently conducting a pilot project for soil regeneration, focusing on a major environmental issue: the fight against the Oriental Bunias, an invasive neophyte that threatens local biodiversity.

The experiment, which began earlier this year, is expected to last until the end of 2024. It revolves around two main aspects: stabilizing the expansion of the invasive plant and restoring soil porosity, water retention, nutrient content, and microbial life. The initial tests conducted on three plots totaling approximately 10,000 m2 are showing great promise.

The solutions proposed by AxessImpact SA draw inspiration from various ongoing experiments carried out by or in collaboration with the international expert network of the Fintech company. For each program, these experts work closely with local stakeholders. This is also the case for the Crans-Montana project, with the notable difference being that the partner is a municipality. Another innovative aspect of the project is the applied methodology. The Valais municipality can continuously evaluate and transparently measure its impact through the monitoring established by AxessImpact SA.

Once the pilot project proves successful, the acquired knowledge can be leveraged by other public administrations. The neighboring municipalities of Lens and Icogne, which are also members of the Association of Crans-Montana Municipalities (ACCM), are particularly interested and will benefit from the project. The final protocol is expected to be transmitted on a much larger scale, given the relevance of the addressed topic.

For AxessImpact SA, environmental preservation relies on a more holistic management of natural resources. Therefore, regenerated soil absorbs more water and carbon, which has a positive impact on the entire ecosystem. The long-term stakes are considerable, and the fact that public authorities support this type of approach sends a strong signal to advocates for a society that places human well-being at its core.

“Our objective is no longer limited to sustainable development; we aim for regenerative development. Starting from existing elements—even if initially detrimental like the Oriental Bunias—we strive for a positive effect,” highlights Yves Carnazzola, co-founder and CEO of AxessImpact. On the other hand, Crans-Montana seeks to enhance the socio-economic model implemented by the Economic Promotion Service of the ACCM. “This project aligns perfectly with all the criteria we pursue to ensure the socio-economic development of our territory,” rejoices Rafal Hys, the project leader.

CRANS-MONTANA: AN INNOVATIVE TERRITORY

The Association of Crans-Montana Municipalities includes Crans-Montana, Lens, and Icogne. In 2018, the ACCM established an Economic Promotion Service. Since then, the region has positioned itself as a leading destination for innovative entrepreneurs with high added value, exemplified by AxessImpact SA. They benefit from numerous advantages, including city-like infrastructure in a mountain setting, proximity to cutting-edge educational institutions (EPFL, HES-SO Valais-Wallis, IUKB, etc.), a central location in the heart of Europe, and a recognized quality of life. These advantages promote synergies among complementary partners and provide an ideal environment for establishing the socio-economic model of the “quintuple helix.” The goal of this model is to facilitate interaction between the public, private, academic, environmental sectors, and those with an impact on civil society