The canton of Basel City has shown Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche that it is confident in the company's environmental record. In the first accord of its kind in the canton, the authorities are handing over more authority for routine controls to th
Under a new environmental cooperation agreement signed by both parties on Wednesday, the canton is released from absolute control while still retaining ultimate responsibility.
The accord regulates what data Roche has to collect and hand over to the authorities, and at what intervals.
"More and more firms are in a position to understand the effect of their activities on the environment," Roche said in a statement.
Barbara Schneider of the Basel City government told a press conference in the city that "with the signing of this deal a new chapter had opened in Basel's environmental politics".
The cantonal authorities also stated that the agreement recognises Roche's efforts on the environmental protection front. They said it would be a key test for a type of accord developed in canton Solothurn and first put into practice in a smaller environment in Pratteln, in canton Basel Country, last year.
Basel is the biggest centre in Switzerland for the chemical and pharmaceutical industries.
swissinfo with agencies