REN New Flash

ECMU Archive

REN Newsflash-January 2017-ISSUE 20072017

Read More
Disclaimer
The views expressed in articles written by external authors are solely the viewpoints of those authors and do not represent the policy or viewpoint of UNEP. While UNEP strives to avoid inclusion of misleading or inaccurate information, it is ultimately the responsibility of the reader to evaluate the accuracy of any news article found in the Environmental Crime Media Update. The citing of commercial technologies, products or services does not constitute endorsement of those items by UNEP.
If you have questions or comments regarding any news item, please contact the source indicated at the beginning of each article directly.
 
Mafia's waste disposal business flourishes in Italy in 2009
AFP, 4th June 2010

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5jPrMvAgIPFVKrUayiOHtHIwiUvjw

ROME — The mafia's waste disposal and illegal dumping business in Italy continued to flourish in 2009, defying the global economy's woes, environmental organisation Legambiente said on Friday.

Circumventing environmental regulations is "the only business that is immune from crises," Legambiente said in a statement, estimating the crime syndicates' turnover in 2009 at 20.5 billion euros (24.5 billion dollars), virtually unchanged compared to 2008.

"The environmental mafia proves again to be solid and powerful holding," said Legambiente President Vittorio Cogliati Dezza.

The biggest growth in revenues (from 3.9 to 5.2 billion euros) came from the handling and disposal of trash, such as spent computer parts which were sent to Africa or East Asia.

The value of its substandard cement business, the eco-mafia's bread and butter, saw a slight drop, from 7.499 to 7.463 billion.

"It is a very lucrative business for clans, which basically control all of the cement production line in the country and because of that they are awarded national and local contracts to build public and private works," Legambiente said.

Another thriving sector in 2009 was crimes involving animals, such as dogfighting, smuggling of endangered species, clandestine butchering and illegal horse races. The business is now worth some three billion euros.

In geographical terms, the southern Campania region around Naples, home to the Camorra syndicate remained the main hub for eco-mafia business, accounting for 17.1 percent of ascertained crimes committed.

Rome's region of Lazio was second, accounting for 12.1 percent.

Renowned Italian writer and journalist Roberto Saviano, whose hard-hitting bestseller on the Camorra, "Gomorra", was turned into a film, said in an introduction to the Legambiente report that "trash has become one of the most profitable businesses over the years".

"Using Italian land as a mine where you can bury trash is more profitable than cultivating the same land," Saviano said.

"Through their environmental businesses crime groups make annual profits that exceed those of Fiat (...) or Benetton," he added.

Saviano is living under police protection after mafia threats.

Copyright © 2010 AFP. All rights reserved.