BBC News – Greece waste: Mounds of filth on an island paradise

Français : Vue de Arachova.

Français : Vue de Arachova. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 The country’s economy may be rotten but other problems are piling up too – and waste management is among the most serious.

Greece buries 80% of its rubbish – over twice the EU average. Near Athens, there is a recycling plant but it only deals with a sixth of the waste that arrives here. Metal is removed for reuse, food is made into compost and some other items are converted into alternative fuel, mainly for the cement industry. But recycling is still in its infancy here.

The problem of random dumping is severe. In 2005, the European Commission took Greece to court to force the closure of 1,100 illegal landfills. Eight years on, 70 still remain. Brussels has now launched a second case against Athens, threatening a daily fine of 71,000 euros until they are eradicated.

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