There are 35 thousand areas to be reclaimed in Italy: 30 billion are needed

There are 35 thousand areas to be reclaimed in Italy: 30 billion are needed

Hydrocarbons and mining residues. And then other industrial waste or what remains of now abandoned processes. Which in Italy are worth a total of about 300 thousand hectares. Areas to be reclaimed which include both sites of national interest and those which fall under the responsibility of the Regions or other entities. A complex mosaic in which several factors and as many skills are intertwined. Outlining a part of the scenario that overall has almost 35 thousand sites, with a report dedicated to the state of remediation and contaminated sites that fall under the responsibility of the Regions, is the work "The state of remediation of contaminated sites in Italy: second report on regional data" produced by Ispra (authors Federico Araneo, Eugenia Bartolucci, Maria Pia Congi, Antonella Vecchio) and by the network of the National Environmental Protection System.

Remediation procedures

The report contains data collected by Mosaico, the national database of sites "subject to reclamation procedures, through which Italy has acquired an overview of the contaminated sites relating to reclamation procedures present in the databases of the Regions or Autonomous Provinces". Data relating to Sin sites, i.e. sites of national interest, are not included in the report.

The numbers

To describe the complexity of the case, there are the data cited by the researchers: «As of December 31, 2020, the total number of sites subject to reclamation proceedings is 35,022 of which 16,199 with proceedings in progress (46% of the total proceedings) and 18,823 with proceedings concluded (54% of the total proceedings) - write the authors -. The remediation proceedings are distributed in a heterogeneous way in the different regions: those in progress are mostly concentrated in Campania (2 0% of ongoing national proceedings) and Lombardy (17%), followed by Tuscany and Veneto (12% and 10% respectively); concluded proceedings are concentrated in Lombardy, with 43% of national proceedings concluded, followed by Tuscany (14%)».

The progress of the works

Despite the census, the entire process which, following the various stages, should lead to the reclamation of the site is still quite slow. If the attention shifts to the data relating to the progress of the works and rehabilitation interventions of the Sin, it is discovered that 66% of the ground areas have been characterized, while only 14% of the areas have the reclamation project approved and 16% of the areas have the procedure concluded because they were found not to be contaminated or because the reclamation was completed.

According to the latest Ispra report, there are a total of 34,478 sites surveyed. Of these, as the institute's researchers clarify, «16,264 have proceedings in progress and 17,862 concluded. Among these, those for which reclamation was necessary were 5,222".

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