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Pazardzhik Incinerator, Bulgaria


The idea of building a facility for waste incineration near Pazardzhik dates back to 2008. An approval by the RIEW Pazardzhik for the project has been given. Members of the local branch of the Greens political party started a procedure to appeal the RIEW decision to the Ministry of Environment and Water, arguing that the construction of an incinerator near Pazardzhik is unacceptable and poses a serious danger to public health.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Pazardzhik Incinerator, Bulgaria
State or province:Pazardzhik
(municipality or city/town)Pazardzhik
Accuracy of locationMEDIUM (Regional level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict: 1st level:Waste Management
Type of conflict: 2nd level :Incinerators
Specific commodities:Domestic municipal waste
Project Details and Actors
Project details:

Ca. 32 000 tonnes/year of unsorted/mixed municipal waste to be incinerated, using 19 000 m3 of water, location within a Natura 2000 protected site, generating 18 000 tonnes/year of bottom ash and ca. 1 500 tonnes/year fly ash (classified as hazardous waste).

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Project area:4.9
Type of populationUrban
Affected Population:290000
Start of the conflict:01/2008
Company names or state enterprises:Intercontinental Utilities Development And Construction Pazardjik Ltd. from Bulgaria
Relevant government actors:Regional Inspectorate on Environment and Water, Ministry of Environment and Water
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:The Greens Political Party, Za Zemiata (GAIA member);, Birdlife Bulgaria [BSPB], Association for agrarian and ecological, projects, GAIA
Conflict and Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Forms of mobilization:Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Objections to the EIA
Impacts of the project
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity)
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Other environmental related diseases
Project StatusStopped
Conflict outcome / response:Court decision (victory for environmental justice)
New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Project cancelled
Development of alternatives:-Cancel the Incinerator project
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Yes
Briefly explain:The Ministry sided with the Greens and scrapped the RIEW-Pazardjik approval of construction of the incinerator because of the non-satisfactory quantity and quality of information in the EIA. There has been an appeal by the investor of the project against the decision of the Ministry before the 3-member panel of the Supreme Administrative Court. Proceedings are being conducted between the investor and the Ministry and the Greens have become party to the defendants (MOEW). The three-member panel of SAC ruled in favor of the Ministry. The decision of the 5-member panel of SAC is most likely to be in favor of the Ministry, i.e. against the construction of the incinerator.
Sources and Materials
Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

Court Case won
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Meta information
Contributor:Evgenia Tasheva
Last update08/04/2014