Rome's social media trash war

Romans post pictures of overflowing rubbish bins on Rome mayor's Facebook page.

As Rome battles a continuing rubbish crisis during scorching temperatures, Romans are posting photographs of the capital's rubbish-strewn streets on the official Facebook page of the city's mayor Virginia Raggi.

The images, accompanied by comments ranging from angry to sarcastic, are appearing under Facebook posts by Raggi, the world's most followed mayor on social media.

Raggi has acknowledged the "critical issues" facing Rome's waste collection and promises that the city is working hard to "overcome and find a solution to the many problems that exist."

She says that the piled-up rubbish on city streets stems from the municipal waste collection company AMA taking "around 15 days off" between the end of May and beginning of June due to a lack of available refuse disposal sites.

The mayor said Rome has since sourced new waste treatment plants, including the S. Vittore incinerator in the Frosinone province, but blamed a private company overseeing the reassignment of waste for a further ten-day delay. This, she says, resulted in 35,000 city bins not being emptied in June.

Raggi also claims that the city has disinfected 55,000 street bins around the city, insisting that the situation is not at emergency levels.

Stating that it is "not the time to talk about medium and long-term solutions to improve the waste cycle of Rome and Lazio", Raggi says it is time to "work together to overcome the difficulty and clean up the city."

The mayor's intervention comes amid increasing cases of overflowing bins being set on fire in the city suburbs, in addition to rubbish dumps and refuse treatment facilities being set ablaze - a phenomenon Raggi blames on "ecomafia" criminals.

Photo Corriere Roma. Via Pietro Adami a Primavalle, alla periferia ovest di Roma. (Photo Panegrossi\LaPresse)