Urban Areas and Infrastructures towards the goal of zero net artificialisation?

ZIZANIE is a multidisciplinary research project, combining ecological and social sciences (sociology of public action, law and economics). It is coordinated by Cesco (MNHN), with the participation of three other laboratories, the PatriNat expertise unit and a environmental office Eliomys. It adopts the political agenda of the Zero Artificialisation (ZAN) as an opportunity to question the process of integrating ecological stakes in land use planning. The ZAN contains two new concepts that could lead to a change in the model of land use planning: the principle of limiting land consumption and the principle of reversibility of development (particularly through the restoration of environments). The ZIZANIE project questions land use planning from the angle of these two notions. (i) First, it is a question of describing and analyzing the process of formalization of ZAN in law and operationalization of ZAN in public action, ensuring that ZAN avoids the pitfalls that have been shown on the mitigation hierarchy, in particular by the InSERCAT project (ITTECOP 2017) to which ZIZANIE follows. (ii) Secondly, the project will focus on assessing the extent to which, from an ecological point of view, a territory can be artificialized without damaging the ecological resilience of the environments. The aim is to question and contribute to the improvement of methods for assessing the ecological impacts of development. (iii) Thirdly, the project will attempt to confront the notions of limitation and reversibility with the reality of the field and the implementation of procedures and instruments of public action, through the study of pre-existing systems in order to anticipate potential obstacles. ZIZANIE will last 30 months, and will contribute to the production of knowledge and deliverables for scientists and practitioners, for a more robust implementation of the mitigation hierarchy, better integrated into the overall landscape of policies to control artificialization.