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Sofia, Bulgaria

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Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria and the largest political, administrative, cultural and educational centre in the country, with a current population of 1.8 million. Sofia Municipality is an administrative unit with the status of a region and divided into 24 districts. The municipality’s main activities include: preservation of the environment, healthcare, and the organisation of social, educational and cultural activities.

The Sofia Municipal Council, a body of local self-government, is authorised to adopt strategies, forecasts, programmes and plans on local issues, including waste management. While its activities are subject to the National Waste Management Plan, this still makes the Municipality a first level stakeholder in the regional environmental and waste management policy.

Sofia waste management picture

As a new EU Member State, Bulgaria is facing the challenges of the practical implementation of EU legislation in the waste sector. In the last few years, progress has been achieved in preparing a legal framework for municipal, industrial and hazardous waste management and in increasing institutional capacity for waste management. A National Waste Management Programme and Action Plan including the waste hierarchy principle and regulatory systems have been introduced. However, waste management practice is still rudimentary, and the bulk of the work needed to achieve a good performance is still to be done.

At present, the final disposal of municipal waste is through disposal. On the territory of Sofia Municipality, there are three systems for pre-treatment (separation) of municipal waste, plant for recycling of construction waste, treatment plant and recovery of bulky waste. The remaining free capacity of the landfill as a result of actions taken to reduce the amount of waste destined for disposal, ensure the needs of the Sofia Municipality for the period till commissioning of techniques and equipment provided under the project „Building of an integrated system of facilities for urban waste treatment of Sofia Municipality”. Under the project are scheduled to be constructed the following facilities in deadlines:

  • Installation of mechanical-biological treatment, which includes: mechanical / manual separation and sorting, biological treatment of organic waste and produce fuel from waste (RDF) - By the end of 2014;
  • Non-hazardous Waste Landfill - by mid of 2013 for the first cell;
  • Plants for composting of "green" and food waste - set up and functioning.

The Municipality of Sofia’s Activities

The of sustainable POLYcentric DEVelopment. Furthermore, the Municipality is currently involved with three Municipality of Sofia is very active in the area of sustainable urban development and environmental protection. Among others, it has participated in the INTERREG IIIB projects Greenkeys, concerned with improvement of urban green spaces, and POLY.DED with the objective of finding common best practices in spatial planning for the promotion other INTERREG IVC projects: PIMMS TRANSFER and PIMMS CAPITAL focusing on sustainable mobility, and Pre-waste which aimed to improve the effectiveness of waste prevention policies.

As an R4R partner, the Municipality of Sofia wanted to exchange experiences concerning waste management in a challenging local and regional environment, and share WASTE TRAIN outcomes within the network. The 6th EG working session took place in Sofia, and together with the three Component Leaders ORDIF, ACR+ and OVAM, the Municipality organised and hosted the R4R Final Conference in October 2014.

Sofia municipality shared the following good practices with the other R4R partners and developed an implementation plan about R4R results.

Learn what competences, skills, and experience Sofia Municipality is bringing to the R4R project, and where it still sees room for improvements.

For more information: Municipality of Sofia's website

Contact details
Municipality of Sofia
33, Moskovska str.
1000 Sofia

E-mail: k.valkova@sofia.bg
Telephone: + 359 2 93 77 286 


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