PeaceLink English

Taranto, Italy, Ilva steel factory: the plants remain under requisition

The new decree launched yet another lifesaver to the banks

A year ago the guarantor of the A.I.A. (Integrated Environmental Authorization) was fired. Today the new sub commissary Mr Edo Ronchi resigned. The A.I.A. has failed. The Italian plant production continues in violation of European law and the opinion of the Constitutional Court according to which the production should be compliant to the authorization.

July 11, 2014 - PeaceLink
12 July 2014
Antonia Battaglia
Source: PeaceLink - 12 July 2014

PeaceLink acknowledges the contents of the new decree, approved by the Council of Ministers, with great surprise as it looks as been designed to save Ilva and allow the plant to continuous production. According to a press note of Ministers of the Environment and Economic Development, the decree is intended to implement the environmental remediation of Ilva with the highest social and economic priority in order to ensure the production of an industrial plant which is considered to be highly strategic. In fact, it is clear that the node around which the operation of the Government revolves, is related to the lack of funds to pay salaries and supplies and the need to ensure governmental protection to the new loan granted by banks.

 

The A.I.A. time schedule gives priority to the implementation of provisions aimed to the containment of the serious health emergency, further confirmed a few days ago by the National Health Institute through the "Sentieri" report.

 The environmental remediation of Ilva is not to be achieved through loans that the government has, in reality, asked the banks to pay Ilva's spin-off and salaries. This is because the urgent environmental remediation of the plant should not be aimed at the strategic revitalization of the company, but primarily to the implementation of those measures to protect the city of Taranto.

 The decree, approved yesterday by the Council of Ministers, on the contrary reinforces a situation characterized by a violation of the A.I.A. (Integrated Environmental Authorization) issued in October 2012. The Italian government, committed to finding the financial resources necessary to ensure the production, did not comply with the above mentioned time schedule. The most important and burdensome requirements still remain a dead letter.

 According to what was established by the Constitutional Court, Ilva could continue to produce only in compliance with the time schedule according to which the completion of  plant retrofitting should have been completed by July 1, 2014. Only the cover of the minerals parks called for a deadline in October 2015.

 

Today we can say that the time schedule as been unfulfilled. For this reason PeaceLink reserves the right to sue the company within the Court of Taranto and the European Commission.

The government, however, continues to indefinitely postpone the implementation of these stringent requirements.

We are therefore in the presence of an ad "hoc" decree, made in a hurry to ensure cash while Ilva's future is not yet clear (there are roumors about a possible acquisition by Arcelor Mittal), nor the environmental drama that affects the population of Taranto is really brought to the fore .

Taranto's hopes still remain totally unfulfilled.

 
And yet another lifesaver has been launched to the production, the banks and the trade unions in violation of European law and the opinion of the Constitutional Court. Meanwhile in Taranto, even this morning, new episodes of industrial "slopping" have clearly shown that little has changed.

However, the internal air monitoring system of Ilva continues to provide baffling measurements, recording carcinogenic PAH values lower than those found in Locorotondo in the coking plant. The fumes are certified as clean as the air of the Itria Valley.

Ilva is now nothing but a theatre stage where a false play is shown, made of broken promises and implausible data. With the resignation of Mr Ronchi this script is now torn apart.

With his resignation, the subcommissary Mr Edo Ronchi (indeed a "strange" figure in Italian politics, once a left extremist, then joining the Green party and now contributing to the actual disastrous situation with the approval of WWF) confirms the ultimate failure of the A.I.A. which had now become a mere screen of good intentions.

A year ago, exactly July 12, 2013, the guarantor of A.I.A. Mr Vitaliano Esposito was dismissed because he was about to start a legal proceeding against the non compliant company. Today, the Ilva continues to operate outside the A.I.A. helped by decrees that serve to avoid any law enforcement. We are in the presence of a government that turns a blind eye to his own failure as this process of unabated infringement goes on.


for PeaceLink


Antonia Battaglia

Luciano Manna

Alessandro Marescotti

Notes: Translated in English by Marco Schnabl

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