New Rome-Amsterdam rail service for the sake of waste management

Image: Wikimedia Commons. Milliped

AMA, the company operating garbage collection in Rome, and the Amsterdam Waste Energy Company (AEB) have found an agreement to ship household waste from the Italian capital to the Dutch one. The new deal entails the shipment of 900 tons of trash every week, which will be sent to the AEB’s waste incineration plant in Amsterdam.

AEB highlighted that the service will start on 1 April and every convoy will be made up of 16 wagons specifically intended for this project. Transportation will be carried out by Mercitalia Rail and the contract is valid for one year, as the company told As Dutch newspaper Het Parool pointed out, Italy will pay AEB 200 euros per ton of trash sent, for a total of 180,000 euros every week. It is not yet clear how long the collaboration between Italy and the Netherlands will last, but AEB mentioned that they process Roman waste in the coming years.

A similar initiative was in the works in the summer of 2022, when Rome tried to establish a sea service to ship its waste to Amsterdam. Carrying out waste transportation via ship would allow for more capacity. However, the project did not go through because waste cargo on ships needs to be pressed and wrapped in packages making them inert. However, AMA lacks the facilities to carry out these processes.

Rome’s struggles with waste management

The Italian capital has been struggling with waste disposal for at least a couple of decades. The Malagrotta site, the main facility for waste disposal in Rome, reached saturation in 2003 and was then closed in 2013. Since then, the various councils ruling the city have struggled with finding a definite solution to this issue.

Image: © Nicholas Gemini

To try and accommodate the problem of waste disposal, the Italian capital is working on opening a new waste incineration plant by the summer of 2026. Acea Ambient, a waste disposal company in Rome, submitted a proposal for the construction of the facility at the beginning of March. Tenders for this project will be available from 1 August 2023, with works planned to start in July 2024.

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Author: Marco Raimondi

Marco Raimondi is an editor of, the online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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