The Department of General and Applied Hydrobiology included the results of the joint project with Sofiyska Voda ‘Live Water’ in the celebration of its 70th anniversary

In the lecture hall of the Rectorate Office Building of Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the Department of General and Applied Hydrobiology to the Faculty of Biology was celebrated. The head of the Department of General and Applied Hydrobiology, Assoc. Prof. Irina Schneider, PhD, started the celebration with a short review of the history of the department.

Professor Yana Topalova, manager of the ‘Live water’ project, presented its most general aspects. The scope of the project is the Sofia Water Cycle and it is emblematic and key for the department for two reasons: ‘First, it is the first time when the three modules of the department – hydrobiology, ichthyology and aquacultures, as well as water treatment technologies worked in unity. Second – it is funded by Sofiyska Voda, one of the most important customers of the department’s graduates. It once again confirms the strong bond between business, science and education’. Professor Topalova thanked the team and Sofiyska Voda. Data from the project were included in 4 doctoral dissertations. The environmental condition of Iskar River was evaluated in compliance with Ordinance Н-4/2012 with the active participation of all lecturers from the department. For a period of one year, 11 research papers were published in Ecological Engineering and Environmental Protection Scientific Journal, providing data on the condition, status of the water and the biodiversity along Iskar River.

During the event the achieved results were presented by the participants in the ‘Live Water’ project, a photo exhibition, as well as short footage, shot during the Summer Hydrobiology Training Practices. 

The Deputy Rector of Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, Prof. Maria Stoycheva, gave a congratulatory speech on behalf of the Rector Prof. Anastas Gerdzhikov on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the department. In it special thanks and congratulations were given to the members of the team of the department and especially to Prof. Yana Topalova – under whose management the ‘Live Water’ project between the Faculty of Biology of Sofia University and Sofiyska Voda AD was implemented. 

The Executive Director of Sofiyska Voda AD Arnaud Valleteau was among the guests invited to the session, together with company’s representatives directly participating in the project. In the welcoming speech he highlighted that it was his honor to be in the heart of the Sofia University and be part of the ‘Live Water’ Project. According to his words, the achieved results are a convincing example of how much we could achieve together when we combine the practical experience of the business and the work of the university circles. Mr. Valleteau noted that the unifying for all present in the Aula was their passion for science and the preservation of planet Earth. He declared that he was proud of the results and thanked the participants, wishing them to think big-scale, to be persistent, so that things happened, and to be leaders in the conservation of nature. 

The Deputy Rector of Sofia University, Prof. Maria Stoycheva, pointed out: ‘Today, when we speak of people’s rights, we inevitably also include the right to a clean environment’. She added that in that area the researchers from the department are pioneers and leaders and wished them good luck in the next 70 years. 

The celebration was also attended by the Dean of the Faculty of Biology, Assoc. Prof. Stoyan Shishkov, deputy deans of the Faculty of Biology,, representatives of the Municipality of Sofia, Directors of institutes with the Bulgarian Academy of Science, professors, students and guests.