Italy faces 62M Euro fine over wastewater failures
The European Commission is taking Italy back to the European Court of Justice over its failure to comply with a 2012 judgment ordering it to improve urban wastewater treatment.
Urban wastewater is still not being adequately collected and treated in 80 urban centres of the 109 covered by the previous judgement, according to the Commission.
Four years later, 80 urban centres, containing more than six million people in total, still do meet standards. The worst performing Italian region is Sicily where 51 locations are not in compliance; Calabria is second worst with 13.
The Commission is now calling on the European Court of Justice to impose a lump sum payment of €62.7M and is also proposing a daily penalty payment of €347,000 if full compliance is not achieved by the date when the Court issues its ruling. The final decision on the penalties rests with the Court of Justice of the EU.
The Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive requires member states to ensure that all agglomerations (towns, cities and settlements) properly collect and treat their urban wastewater. Towns and cities with a population equivalent of more than 15,000 inhabitants and which discharge urban wastewater into receiving waters have been required to have systems for collecting and treating their wastewater in place since 2001.
The Commission said the second referral to the Court is necessary to ensure compliance in the 80 remaining agglomerations, given the very slow progress and the repeated failure to meet the pre-announced deadlines.
Other Member States (Belgium, Greece, Luxembourg and Portugal) have already been subject to penalties in similar cases, while Spain has also been referred to Court for a second time and is expected to face a fine.
- Tideway Tunnel an 'attractive investment prospect' - government The government has flagged up the Thames Tunnel Tideway project as being open to foreign investment. The scheme is among... Read More >
- EC refers Spain to court over urban wastewater failings The EC is taking Spain to court for failing to ensure that wastewater is properly treated. The development comes 11 years... Read More >
- ‘Upbeat' mood at Water NI conference The water industry in Northern Ireland has welcomed a “positive and upbeat” mood on the approaching six-year PC15... Read More >
- Fats, oil and grease need clear thinking Latest research from Cranfield has shone a light on the characteristics of of fats, oil and grease (FOG) droplets entering... Read More >
- Microbes can deal with surfactants A wide variety of surfactants are used in industry and need to be removed from wastewater, but a similar variety of bacteria... Read More >
- Water treatment – when are bacteria dead? A new technique for measuring bacterial concentrations can provide valuable information about whether or not our water is... Read More >
- Peristaltic pumps prove the right dose for Welsh Water Switching from diaphragm to peristaltic pumps for chemical dosing helped Dwr Cymru Welsh Water save Opex costs while... Read More >
- Specialist microbes to remove wastewater hydrocarbons Hydrocarbons present particular difficulties when present in wastewater, but the right combination of bacteria can degrade... Read More >