Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Romania will not accept Italy's waste

BUCHAREST, May 30 (Reuters) - Romania's government has rejected Italy's attempts to deposit household waste on its territory, Environment Minister Attila Korodi said on Wednesday. The Naples "garbage crisis" has dominated news in Italy for weeks as local and national authorities have tried to end a stalemate over mountains of trash rotting on the streets because of a lack of adequate landfill sites.

Italian authorities are looking into temporary solutions, such as re-opening closed landfills and sending garbage to other areas. On Monday the Italian Environment Ministry said it had contacted the Romanian authorities about sending Italian waste to the new European Union member, but Korodi was against it. "Our stance is clear: We are not allowing Italian waste on Romanian territory," Korodi told state news agency Rompres. "Our infrastructure is not developed enough to handle our own waste."

"If someone lets garbage into Romania, they will suffer the consequences of Romanian law." Korodi said the environment chapter negotiated with Brussels allows Romania to refuse waste from other countries until 2015. A delegation from the Italian Environment Ministry and other agencies will meet Korodi in Bucharest on Thursday to discuss the issue. (Additional reporting by Deepa Babington in Rome)

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