Rome, waste emergency again. What is happening

From the dependence on other Regions to the lack of facilities, political responsibilities of the last 30 years are on the dock

Bins again filled to the point of becoming real mini landfills and a system, that of waste, which in Rome is once again collapsing. But what is going on? After the closure of the Malagrotta landfill, after the partial closure of the mechanical biological treatment plants of the undifferentiated, and in the absence of recycling plants, the Capital must periodically contract with the other Regions to send its waste to be disposed of. And now we are in the umpteenth phase of transition from one Region to another. In the meantime, not knowing where to take the waste, the frequency of collection decreases by turning between neighborhoods and town halls and the garbage remains on the trucks or on the street.

To get out of this situation, and stop being dependent on agreements with the Regions or from abroad, Rome (which produces over 4 thousand tons of waste a day) would have to build a large part of its plants to be able to treat and dispose of a large part part of the waste on its territory.

Chicco Testa: “All guilty”

For Chicco Testa, president of Fise Assoambiente, yet another waste emergency in Rome “confirms two critical points, highlighted for some time. First, the lack of plants: there are hundreds of tons of waste that no one knows where to put and therefore remain in the deposits on trucks or on the street. Second: the critical situation of the Ama of which this confused not to say amazing trade union agreement demonstrates the state of difficulty and crisis that has now lasted for years “and everyone is to blame”: Region, Municipality and Love. No one is innocent. ” Responsibility, therefore, of the Region because “the regional plan is based on false premises – underlines Testa – the first, that the amount of waste will be reduced by 10% between now and 2025, which will not happen; the second, that separate collection you will go from 50 to 70% in 2025. These are false estimates that try to say that the plants that are needed in Rome are fewer than those that are really needed. Waste cannot be disappeared with numbers “. For its part, “the municipality is unable to implement anything, or at least it has not succeeded to date, now we will see” and then there is the Ama, “a company without capacity and unable to react, on which to put back hand deeply. A company that cannot be reformed from the inside: Gualtieri will try and it will be yet another disillusionment. We need to change register, for example by competing for the sweeping of parts of the city at least to create some competition “.

Legambiente: “Gualtieri must seriously put his hand to Ama”

Legambiente also intervenes on the issue of Ama and plants. “Gualtieri – says the national president Stefano Ciafani – must put his hand to the company: Ama is not able to implement European policies on the circular economy. He must seriously put his hand on the company, as no one has ever done in the last few years. 30 years, 20 years of which governed by the center left. Ama’s staff must have skills, and they don’t have many, the company must be efficient, effective and economical, and it is neither efficient, nor effective, nor economic. The time has come for Roman politics to take an interest in Ama’s real problems “.

If Ama does not have the plants, it is because, according to Ciafani, “in the 90s an unwritten agreement with Cerroni, owner of the Malagrotta landfill, on the one hand guaranteed very low transfer prices (50 euros per ton) in the face of large quantities of waste to be taken to landfills (about 70-80% of Roman waste), on the other hand the condition was that Ama did not make the plants. If these are the faults of the Roman center-left, Raggi has others: it has dismantled the projects of anaerobic digestion to produce biomethane that Marino had set up and had Ama design two aerobic composting plants in the north-east of Rome. Lazio Region to authorize the anaerobic plants under evaluation. Then other plants must also be built because Rome has about 500 thousand tons a year of organic waste that could be in tercet with the differentiated “.

The node of the implants

As for the plants, the node is authorizing. To build a plant, explains Chicco Testa, “construction times range from 18 to 24 months, three years in the case of very complex plants, but if it then takes seven to authorize them …”. And in the meantime, “we will always be in crisis, we must hope in the good heart of the other Regions or abroad”. Which plants do you need? “All: landfills, at least one other thermo-combustor in Lazio, and plants are needed for the treatment of the wet fraction”.

The opportunity of the Pnrr

In recent weeks, the terms of the Mite call have opened to spend 1.5 billion euros of the NRP on circular economy plants, 60% of which are destined for the central and southern part of the country. “Gualtieri – says the president of Legambiente Ciafani – who knows the PNRR well, must push so that Ama also presents other projects using the resources of the PNRR. From here to a year, maximum two, the bins must be removed from the streets by pushing the differentiated domicile, going back on the Rays decision “.

Ecomafia 2021, Rome Capital of bad waste management

According to the latest edition of Legambiente’s Ecomafia dossier, Lazio has the worst data in the cycle of waste and illicit disposal: 736 offenses related to waste disposal ascertained in 2020, 942 complaints, 36 arrests and 391 seizures. Data with which Lazio is in second position after Campania for crimes in the waste cycle (it was in third place in the 2020 edition of the dossier). Among the provinces, that of Rome continues to be among the worst on waste, and if last year it was the third worst province, this year it rises to second place overall with 418 crimes. Legambiente Lazio has mapped and reported the presence of about 1,000 landfills in the capital, in addition to reports of new landfills in the city and its hinterland, especially in green areas.

by Stefania Marignetti