The Italian army has been sent to bulldoze 100,000 tonnes of rubbish that has piled up in the streets of the southern city of Naples.

The government is to hold an emergency meeting to find a solution to the rubbish crisis. Naples dustmen stopped collecting rubbish two weeks ago. With nowhere to put it local people are forced to burn it. The fire brigade has been struggling to put out the fires.

Rubbish crisis in Naples, Italy Rubbish crisis in Naples, Italy
Rubbish crisis in Naples (Image courtesy of Xinhuanet)

Rubbish collection is a perennial problem which has plagued Naples and its politicians for some 15 years. The government is conscious it is under severe pressure to find a solution – but this means tackling the mob.

The Camorra, the Neapolitan version of the Mafia, has turned this into a hugely profitable business. They have sabotaged every effort to build hi-tech incinerators, so that Naples must rely on landfill sites, where they can hide the domestic and industrial waste, which they chuck in from all around the country.

Millions of tonnes of it have been dumped illegally in the sea or in the countryside, untreated and highly toxic. Doctors say cancer rates in Naples are much higher than the national average. [BBC]

I won’t be surprise if this kind of rubbish and health crisis is happening in a 3rd world country; it’s unthinkable that it is happening in Italy… the story is good enough to make into a movie.


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