In the first issue of the competition conducted in 2016, ten Bulgarian municipalities won the right to be called ECO-MUNICIPALITY. The winners were Targovishte, Kaspichan, Gabrovo, Godech, Zlatograd, Bratsigovo, Bobov Dol, Slivnitsa, Velingrad and Kostenets.
As a world leader of environmental services, Veolia gave out a total of four prizes in the sectors WSS and waste processing. Two of them in the Water Sector are for Gabrovo and Godech. The municipalities were evaluated by an independent jury of experts for good practices and achievements in the categories “Sustainable Water Management” and “Sustainable Waste Management”.
The recognized employees in the water sector visited in May the potable and wastewater treatment plants in the Czech cities Hradec Králové and Prague, a laboratory for testing the qualities of the water, Veolia’s campus, the Waterworks Museum in Prague. The participants’ interest was spurred especially by the system SWIM – a new development allowing control and obtaining of information at every stage of the water supply, sound tracking and localization of failures within short terms.
“Good practices and experience were shared, many issues were discussed. For the short time we had we managed to get acquainted on spot with the full work cycle of one WSS company – abstraction, treatment, supply, sewerage, treatment and discharge of the water”, shared Vasil Trenev, Deputy Executive Director of Sofiyska Voda. The remaining two awards were given to the municipalities Targovishte and Kaspichan, for which there will be visits by specialists from Veolia in the upcoming months, who will share good realized practices of Veolia and will participate in a specially-organized audit.
The competition ECO-MUNICIPALITY aims at promoting initiatives of the municipalities in the sphere of sustainable development. It has been conceived as an annual initiative favoring good practice exchange between French and Bulgarian municipalities and the actions at local level. The initiative is organized by the French Embassy, in partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Water and the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works. The initiative is under the patronage of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria.