Fechet announces that the fines for unauthorized waste deposits will be recovered from the culprits. GEO under approval

The Minister of the Environment, Mircea Fechet, declared on Tuesday that the fines paid by the state as a result of the sanctions imposed on Romania by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) for not closing unauthorized waste deposits will soon be able to be recovered from the culprits . The official announced that a draft emergency ordinance in this sense is under approval.

Fechet: Romania pays approximately 600 euros daily for each open deposit Photo: Archive

Minister Fechet, who attended the meeting of the Senate Environment Committee on Tuesday, stated that the ordinance is in the interministerial approval circuit and estimated that it could reach the Government's table in a few weeks.

Whether we are talking about natural or legal persons, some in insolvency or bankruptcy proceedings, every leu of the fines that the Romanian state pays will be recovered. This is the message I want to convey especially to the holders of environmental obligations, especially to those who have had 30 years to green these deposits and have not done so, I tell them that it is not too late to comply with these obligations . In the absence of actions, the Romanian state will have to expropriate them, to make these expenses out of public money. (…) The respective natural or legal persons will pay not only the greening costs (feasibility study, execution works), but also the penalties that the Romanian state will pay to the European Commission“, explained Mircea Fechet.

According to the minister, among the 31 sites not authorized for exploitation are a municipal deposit managed by the Braşov City Hall and the phosphogypsum dump of the Sofert Complex in Bacău for which the technical-economic indicators for greening are to be approved by Government decision.

We will be forced to identify sources of funding from the state budget and, instead of building schools, kindergartens, hospitals or roads, we will green these warehouses that should have been greened 30 years ago“, mentioned Fechet, according to Agerpres.

The minister recalled that initially there were 101 non-compliant deposits, then, in 2018, when Romania was first condemned, 68 remained and at the end of 2023 – 31.

Romania pays approximately 600 euros daily for each of the 31 deposits left open, that is 18,000 euros.

The term we estimate for the greening of waste deposits, from the information provided by the designers, refers to the year 2027“, added Fechet.

Sanctions against Romania

According to a statement from the CJEU dated December 14, 2023, the Court imposed financial sanctions on Romania for not closing unauthorized waste deposits.

In its decision, the Court of Justice states that Romania has not yet closed 31 unauthorized sites for exploitation. It obliges Romania to pay a lump sum of 1.5 million euros and a penalty of 600 euros per waste deposit and per day of delay. When determining the amount of the injunctive penalty, the Court takes into account the seriousness of the violation, its duration and Romania's ability to pay.