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Parliamentary questions
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6 November 2013
Question for written answer E-012560-13
to the Commission
Rule 117
Erminia Mazzoni (PPE) , Pino Arlacchi (S&D) , Franco Bonanini (NI) , Lara Comi (PPE) , Andrea Cozzolino (S&D) , Susy De Martini (ECR) , Giovanni La Via (PPE) , Barbara Matera (PPE) , Aldo Patriciello (PPE) , Fiorello Provera (EFD) , Oreste Rossi (PPE) , Marco Scurria (PPE) , Andrea Zanoni (ALDE) , Claudio Morganti (EFD) , Giommaria Uggias (ALDE) , Alfredo Antoniozzi (PPE) , Mara Bizzotto (EFD) , Franco Frigo (S&D) , Giuseppe Gargani (PPE) , Mario Borghezio (NI) , Alfredo Pallone (PPE) , Roberta Angelilli (PPE) , Vito Bonsignore (PPE)

 Subject:  Pollution in Abruzzo
 Answer in writing 

— In March 2007, a vast illegal landfill site was discovered in Bussi sul Tirino in the Abruzzo region, containing thousands of cubic metres of buried toxic substances. The site is located near the chemical industrial zone and is less than 20 metres away from the east bank of the Pescara River.

— Three further illegal sites were subsequently found in the same area, all equally large and equally dangerous.

— The entire area, comprising 7.5 hectares, is currently under the authorities’ control.

— According to studies conducted by Italy’s environmental agency ISPRA, the environmental damage is estimated at EUR 8.5 billion.

— According to environmental organisations, levels of chloroform, trichloroethylene, dichloromethane and carbon tetrachloride in the water table are thousands of times higher than the legally permissible levels. Apparently the presence of dioxin has also been confirmed.

— It seems that in the decades leading up to 2007, around 500 000 residents of the Val Pescara area had been using and drinking water unfit for human consumption.

— It will cost in the region of EUR 600 million to decontaminate the site; however the Italian Government has only promised EUR 50 million.

The area in question is home to several sites that are part of the Natura 2000 network.

1. Is the Commission aware of the situation outlined above? If so, what steps has it taken thus far to protect the environment and the health of residents in the Bussi sul Tirino area?

2. Does the Commission believe that Italy has abided by EU environmental legislation?

3. Does the Commission think it should negotiate with the competent authorities funding for decontamination of the area as part of the 2014‐2020 Structural Fund programming period?

Original language of question: ITOJ C 228, 17/07/2014
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