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More funding for hazardous waste site

The cantonal parliament of Aargau has allocated an additional SFr57 million ($64.6 million) for the decontamination of the Kölliken hazardous waste landfill site.

The latest tranche of funding, which the parties said they accepted “through gritted teeth”, brings the total cost of remediation work on the site in central Switzerland to SFr770 million.

Kölliken is Switzerland’s largest hazardous waste site and was in operation, run by a consortium, from 1978 to 1985, when it was closed by the local authorities for environmental reasons.

The remediation work, which began in 2007, is now running SFr325 million over budget and is due to be completed by 2016 – four years later than expected.

During its years in operation, a total of 475,000 tonnes of hazardous waste was deposited in drums, bags and as loose waste, according to an information update on Kölliken’s website.

A second phase of removing the waste matter began in March. Three sealed halls with internal negative pressure were specially built to carry out the removal process.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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