The European Commission is taking Romania to the Court of Justice of the EU for its failure to close and rehabilitate 68 illegal landfills, which represent a serious risk for human health and the environment. Despite earlier warnings from the Commission, Romania has failed to take measures against 68 non-compliant landfills, as required by EU Landfill Directive (Council Directive 1999/31/EC). Under the Directive, Member States must recover and dispose of waste in a manner that does not endanger human health and the environment, prohibiting the abandonment, dumping or uncontrolled disposal of waste. Romania was obliged to close and rehabilitate these substandard municipal and industrial landfills by 16 July 2009. Due to insufficient progress in addressing the issue, the Commission sent an additional reasoned opinion in September2015, urging the Romanian authorities to adequately deal with 109 uncontrolled sites, which – although not in operation – still posed a threat to human health and the environment. Some progress was made, but for 68 landfills the necessary measures – to clean them up and close them – had still not been completed by December 2016. In an effort to urge Romania to speed up the process, the Commission is bringing the Romanian authorities before the Court of Justice of the EU.
For more information, please refer to the Commission’s full press release.