Illegal dump site in the catacombs | Photo: Gregorio Borgia/AP
Italian police are investigating after an underground “lake” of the spilt oil has been found in the Roman catacombs along the Apian Road. The place has been secured by the police.
Underground tunnels and caves were from the 2nd century BCE used as a tomb. In recent years the site has been regularly treated as a garbage dump and a real “lake” of oil has formed in the catacombs, polluting the historic site.
The Roman funerary complex is evidence of the outstanding architectural and engineering skills of the ancient Romans. According to specialists, it is a unique facility that requires special care. The lack of action by the Italian authorities to clean the catacombs meant that the European Union imposed penalties of millions on the Italian state.
Business-related to waste management has recently become a lucrative business for organized crime, operating mainly in the poorer – southern regions of Italy. A common phenomenon is the storage of garbage in underground locations and then burning them. This, in turn, leads to environmental pollution.