In an effort to lessen exposure to the potential dangers of mercury, the EU has taken a number of measures, including the adoption of Regulation No 1102/2008, which bans the export of metallic mercury and various mercury compounds and requires Member States to ensure the ‘safe’ disposal of mercury used in or produced by certain industrial activities. This involves the temporary above- and under-ground storage of the material. Directive 2011/97/EU decrees that this regulation has become obsolete and that additional assessments of long-term storage are needed. However, the directive itself lays down new provisions for temporary storage only.
Can the Commission confirm that studies have been made to ascertain that such ‘temporary’ storage facilities have no serious environmental impact? What research is currently being conducted to find more sustainable means of disposal?