Bulgaria's Lovech Takes 50 Thousand Tons of Sofia's Waste

Society » ENVIRONMENT | October 14, 2009, Wednesday // 19:08| Views: | Comments: 0
Bulgaria's Lovech Takes Sofia's Waste in Exchange of Infrastructure Funds: Bulgaria's Lovech Takes 50 Thousand Tons of Sofia's Waste A total of 50,000 tons of baled waste will be transported from the capital Sofia to the dump site near the city of Lovech. Photo by BGNES

The landfill in the city of Lovech is going to take 50 thousand tons of baled Sofia waste, the local municipality announced.

The decision was relayed by mayors from the Lovech Region, municipal councilors and citizens during a Wednesday meeting with the leadership of the Ministry of Environment and Waters. The Ministry, on its part, will provide BGN 2 M for the necessary equipment to be used by the local landfill.

The municipality had assured alarmed citizens that the new dumpsite has a high level of environmental protection and is a modern facility built with State financing, in compliance with all European Environment Laws.

The representatives of the Lovech municipality had asked for compensations for their extended hand to help solve the Sofia waste problem such as financial assistance for different municipal projects. The Ministry is to review the requests by the end of the month and submit them to the Finance Ministry, the official press release informs.

On September 17, after heated debates, the municipal councilors from Bulgaria's second largest city Plovdiv decided to take 100,000 tons of garbage collected from the capital Sofia to be deposited at a landfill near the city under the condition the Council of Ministers provides at least BGN 25 M for Plovdiv's infrastructure.

Finding a solution to Sofia ongoing waste problems was a politically sensitive issue in the months before the parliamentary elections in the summer, which mayor of the capital Boyko Borisov won by a large margin.

The previous Socialist-led government officially declared a state of emergency in Sofia at the beginning of April over lack of adequate waste removal, saying that the garbage problems threatened national security and citing health and environmental concerns.

The then opposition party of Sofia mayor GERB, which won the elections by a large margin and formed a government, dismissed this as pre-election muscle pumping.

The residents close to Sofia operational landfill at Suhodol have repeatedly staged rallies, demanding the closing of the dumpsite on the western outskirts of Bulgaria's capital, citing health and environmental concerns.

The dumpsite was reopened at the beginning of December 2007 after the environment ministry backed the controversial option to prevent a looming garbage crisis in the capital.

Suhodol residents forced Sofia authorities to introduce crisis management in July 2005 after blockading the landfill. The protests left the streets in the capital littered with garbage, posing a serious risk to human health and the environment.

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Tags: garbage, Suhodol, Plovdiv
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