When assets worth €1.5 billion (Rs 9,015 crore) were seized recently from a Sicilian businessman, it drew an unexpected picture: growing investments from the local mafia in the renewable energy sector. Indeed, the businessman himself is curiously called the Lord of the Wind, because of his popularity in the wind energy sector in Italy.
In a way, it must have been an offer the Sicilian mafia lords found difficult to refuse. At a time when the world is up in arms about clean energy, crime syndicates can hardly be blamed for queuing up for a share of the pie.
Still, better clean energy than gambling or drugs or prostitution, as was the norm for mafia businesses in the 1930s and 1940s. Judging by the staying power of the infamous Cosa Nostra and its ilk, there is always a place to put the dough. Doing so in clean energy might just have a redemptive, green effect on the world.