NEWS

New plan for waste disposal

A new solid waste processing plant is to be built at Phyli, in western Attica, near the existing site at Ano Liosia, which is to be expanded as part of a plan unveiled yesterday that aims to do away with unsightly garbage dumps by 2006. The National Solid Waste Management Plan, presented yesterday by Environment and Public Works Minister Vasso Papandreou, provides for a gradual reduction in the volume of solid waste, stricter rules for the operation of garbage disposal sites and compulsory use of alternatives through recycling and reuse of waste where possible. Papandreou also announced that local government councils in Eastern Attica will have to decide on a new site by the end of the year. Otherwise the ministry would do so by law. In 1997 over 6,500 open dumps operated in Greece; this number has now been reduced to 1,453. Papandreou said the ministry hopes to reduce the figure to 1,300 by December 2002, 1,000 by the end of 2003 and to eliminate them altogether by December 2006. Some 483 million euros have been set aside for the program, along with private capital of 88 million euros.