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EU cracks down on Cypriot waste inaction

Cyprus is being given two months by the European Commission to set out how it is tackling shortcomings in its waste and recycling arrangements.

Quoting the landfill and waste framework directives, the commission says they are not being applied properly in Cyprus. Concern was first raised formally in 2015 when a survey of member states found ‘shortcomings’ in three of the country’s five districts with 21% of the total waste produced in Cyprus being landfilled without any pre-treatment.

The commission found that in the district of Pafos no pre-treatment was applied to any waste sent to the landfill. It ruled that Cyprus had not established an integrated and adequate network of waste management installations for mixed municipal waste.

‘The commission has therefore decided to send a letter of formal notice to Cyprus, which has two months to respond and address the shortcomings raised by the commission,’ it says in the latest list of continuing infringements by member states. ‘In the absence of a satisfactory response, the Commission may decide to send a reasoned opinion.’

The commission is also taking legal steps against Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece and Slovakia for failing to comply with the two directives and are being urged to ensure appropriate treatment of waste before landfilling. In a separate move, Romania is also being referred to the EU Court of Justice for failure to comply with the Landfill Directive.

On a more positive note, the latest Eurostat data released in October indicated that Cypriots recycled 51% of its plastic packaging waste generated, comfortably above the EU average of 41%.

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