The public are asked to take rubbish home with them. Instead, it is just dumped.


Escorca town hall and the regional environment ministry are at loggerheads over the cost of the collection and incineration of rubbish in the municipality's main tourist areas. This really means Sa Calobra, where rubbish has once more accumulated in the Torrent de Pareis, a natural monument.

On Saturday, two volunteers were prevented from depositing rubbish in municipal containers that had been collected from the torrent. These volunteers were in fact wearing environment ministry t-shirts. They said that they were acting in a personal capacity. But whatever their official role (or not), the intent had been to remove rubbish which has built up ever since the town hall withdrew containers in the immediate area. The town hall did this in order to save residents having to pay for rubbish generated almost exclusively by tourists.

Antoni Solivellas, Escorca's mayor, openly admits that the withdrawal of the containers and a refusal to clean the area are ways of pressurising the ministry into restoring the system that had existed until the end of last year.

The dispute started when the ministry took away rubbish containers from all recreational areas in Majorca and put up posters telling the public to take their rubbish home with them. The government justified this on the basis that the containers were being misused.

Solivellas says that the amount rubbish hasn't decreased and that it is simply being dumped. He refuses to accept a cost that has to be passed onto the 240 residents of the municipality, when it is not the residents who are producing the rubbish.

On the Friday, Solivellas had denounced the situation with the rubbish to Unesco (Sa Calobra is obviously part of the Tramuntana World Heritage Site). When he learned on Saturday that there were two people from the ministry collecting waste at the torrent, he went with local police and warned them that they could not put it in municipal containers.