OPINION

Pointless ultimatum?

There is no real point to the «ultimatum» issued to the government by the local authorities of western Attica, demanding an «alternative solution» – as opposed to the capital’s already overburdened landfill at Ano Liosia – for the disposal of tons of sludge from the waste-processing plant on Psyttaleia. The authorities have threatened to embark on further strike action, which would ensure that the streets of Athens are once again strewn with garbage unless the government solves the problem by June 15. However, they realize that the answer they are demanding does not exist. And how can even a temporary solution be found in less than a week? No one is disputing the validity of their objection to the fact that our capital has become a veritable garbage dump. But in view of the prevailing circumstances, their ultimatum and protest action are tantamount to blackmail. The authorities’ decision to open the Ano Liosia landfill and start gathering tons of trash from the streets has been widely applauded as a positive move. But some logic must also be applied. Psyttaleia is overflowing, there is no other site to which the sludge can be transferred; so the only apparent solution is to mix the sludge with earth and compost, lay it out near the landfill, and plant trees and shrubs over it in an attempt to minimize environmental pollution as much as possible…