Cengio and Saliceto

Our remediation project at the former Acna site has given new life to the Bormida Valley.

The regeneration of a century-old production plant

The Cengio and Saliceto Site of National Priority islocated in the Bormida river valley, in the province of Savona, and covers an area of approximately 67 hectares. Its origin dates back to 1882, with the building of a small dynamite factory. In 1925, Acna, short for Aziende Chimiche Nazionali Associate, converted it into a factory for producing intermediates for dyes and pharmaceuticals that was taken over by the Montecatini company in 1931 and then by Montedison in 1964. In 1988, after a century of operation by companies outside the Eni group, Acna merged with Enimont as part of the industrial rescue operations ordered by the Italian government. In 1991 the plant was transferred to Enichem, now Eni Rewind, which permanently stopped production in 1999. The remediation plan for the site began in 1988, following a decision by the Council of Ministers who recognised Val Bormida to be an area at high risk of environmental crisis, and was relaunched in 2000 with the signing of a Programme Deal between Acna, the Ministries of the Environment, Industry and Health, the Regions of Liguria and Piedmont and the State-appointed Commissioner. 

Our activities in Cengio and Saliceto

The earliest safety measures activities for the site began in the ‘80s. Specifically, in 1984 Montedison carried out the first containment works, including alternating masonry, concrete, plastic diaphragms, jet grouting and drainage trenches to prevent groundwater from seeping from the site to external areas. A cement-bentonite plastic diaphragm was later placed in the impermeable marly substrate, interposed with HDPE. The full reclamation plan was launched in 1988, and with the Programme Agreement signed in 2000 the site was divided into four homogeneous zones for permanent safety measures and remediation works: Zone A1 is designated for the storage of materials, Zone A2 is the plant area where the Torrione, the symbol of Cengio, is located, Zone A3 is the wetland area, and Zone A4, known as Pian Rocchetta, located in a bend on the right bank of the Bormida river, about one kilometre from the industrial site. For each area, the State-appointed Commissioner approved a specific remediation project. At the present time Eni Rewind has completed the interventions on the A1, A2 and A4 Zones. For the latter two, the company has obtained the relevant remediation certificates, and therefore the areas are now available for new projects aimed at the development and valorisation of the territory.