“The state puts problems under the rug and waste under the tablecloth”.

Several dozen activists from the environmental group Extinction Rebellion blocked the Stocamine hazardous waste landfill site in Wittelsheim, Haut-Rhin this Saturday morning before leaving the scene peacefully.

Some chained themselves to the entrance gate.

Others lay on the ground, strapping themselves to a bag filled with cement to impede a possible evacuation and set up a wooden turret, according to photos posted on Twitter by the organization, which wants to draw attention to the climate emergency.

“We carried out our action and the objectives were achieved”

In the early morning, some had entered the Stocamine enclosure and tagged buildings and equipment, told AFP Céline Schumpp, amicable liquidator of the Stocamine operator, Mines de potasse d'Alsace (MDPA), expressing his "total incomprehension" in the face of this action while work on the site is at a standstill.

No activity was taking place on the site on this Saturday morning.

Accompanied by the gendarmes deployed on the spot to secure the site, the activists lifted their blockade around 10:30 a.m.

“We decided to leave, because we carried out our action and the objectives were achieved”, explained an activist nicknamed “Pousse”, interviewed by Rue89 Strasbourg.

The state wants to close the site

Stocamine is a former potash mine transformed at the turn of the 2000s into a storage site for non-radioactive hazardous industrial waste.

Following a fire in 2002, its activity was stopped.

Since then, the fate of the 42,000 tonnes of waste still buried 550 meters underground has been a source of dispute and legal battles between the State, which wants to close the site and confine it with concrete plugs before the mine collapses. , and local authorities and environmentalists, who want as much waste as possible to be removed as a protective measure for the nearby Alsace groundwater table.

On Wednesday, the administrative court of Strasbourg decided to temporarily suspend the work just undertaken to prepare for the closure, inflicting a new setback on the State in its desire to definitively confine the waste.


Alsace: Start of work for the closure of Stocamine, a site containing 42,000 tonnes of non-radioactive waste


Alsace: The State commits 160 million euros of guarantee for the management of Stocamine

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