Italy: Govt. allegedly failed to prevent environmental & health risks associated with ILVA steel plant, argues report; incl. co non-response

ILVA_photo_credit_Wikimedia Commons

On 13 April 2018, Human Rights International Corner (HRIC), FIDH, Unione Forense per la Tutela dei Diritti Umani and Peacelink published a report entitled "The Environmental Disaster and Human Rights Violations of ILVA Steel Plant in Italy". The report looks at the ILVA plant in Taranto, the largest steel plant in Europe, and its impact on the environment and the health of the population of Taranto, as well as that of its employees. The authors argue that the Italian state has continuosly failed to take preventive and precautionary measures in order to limit the risk of exposure to polluting emissions. This stands in contrast to Italy's commitments under its National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights.

The report calls on Italy to adopt all necessary measures to limit environmental damage related to ILVA’s production activities and to prevent further damage in the interests of the population of Taranto. The Business and Human Rights Resource Centre also invited ILVA to comment on the concerns raised in relation to its activities in Italy. The company did not respond.

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Company non-response
16 May 2018

ILVA did not respond

We invited ILVA to respond to concerns about the human rights and environmental impacts of the ILVA steel plant in Taranto. The company did not respond.

Report
13 April 2018

The environmental disaster and human rights violations of ILVA steel plant in Italy

Author: HRIC, FIDH, Peacelink, Unione Forense per la Tutela dei Diritti Umani

This brief analysis places the ILVA case [...] into a larger international framework showing how both the first and last stages of the steel supply chain are linked to [...] a story of repeated human rights and environmental violations...

Italy has the obligation to ensure effective protection of the right to life, the right to health and the right to live in a healthy environment, and to ensure that industrial activities carried out within its jurisdiction comply with international, regional and national laws and do not violate fundamental rights of individuals...

The case of ILVA thus illustrates the need to adopt an international binding instrument that regulates companies’ behaviour towards human rights. Such an instrument should clarify the State’s duty to: i) protect, respect and fulfil human rights in relation with business activities; ii) provide access to a complementary international mechanism to monitor the implementation of its provisions and; iii) monitor the implementation of the provisions set out in the States’ National Action Plans.

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