European Commission warns Italy over smog, waste management

EPA/CESARE ABBATE

A file picture dated 20 July 2011 of a man transporting goods in a cart past a pile of uncollected rubbish in a street in Naples, Italy.

European Commission warns Italy over smog, waste management


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Italy urgently needs to improve its waste management, water infrastructure and air pollution, according to the European Commission.

A report on environmental policies across the European Union was released by the European Commission on February 6. The report notes Italy’s “persistent problems” in waste water treatment, particularly in the south of the country.

As reported by The Local, Italy was also lambasted for high levels of air pollution and smog in the north, having been warned last week it could face a fine of up to €1bn for exceeding safe limits of fine particles.

In the first month of the year, nine Italian towns were over the limit on at least half of the days.

Cremona in Lombardy was the worst offender, while big cities including Rome, Turin and Naples introduced partial traffic blocks in an effort to mitigate the smog.

According to The Local, the report suggested that Italy introduce a national tax on landfills or harmonise its regional taxes to reduce landfill waste.

Non-compliance with high EU environmental standards has already drained tens of millions from the state coffers in fines for illegal landfill sites, including fines worth a total of €85m for the ongoing waste crisis in Campania, reported The Local.

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