17 Mar 2022

Svilengrad: the first Zero Waste Candidate City in Bulgaria


The City of Svilengrad is on its way to becoming a Zero Waste Certified City – the first in Bulgaria. The municipality has committed to ambitious zero waste targets by 2025.

The City’s Mayor, Arch. Anastas Karchev, has signed the Zero Waste Municipality Certification Agreement, becoming the first Bulgarian Zero Waste Candidate City.
The announcement follows its official application for the Zero Waste Cities Certification, a robust certification standard, provided by the European NGO Mission Zero Academy and powered by Zero Waste Europe, for cities in Europe wanting to accelerate their zero waste transition and circular economy implementation at the local level.

Mission Zero Academy and Zero Waste Europe, together with the local zero waste organisation, Za Zemiata, will guide and support Svilengrad in its zero waste journey, helping to achieve its goals by 2025.

With this commitment, Svilengrad, the first Bulgarian city to successfully implement a door-to-door separate collection system, has agreed to take meaningful steps to improve its performance in waste and resource management with a specific focus on textile, construction waste as well as the introduction of separate collection systems in the villages around. In 2017 the city was awarded as the Greenest municipality in the Ecopark Bulgaria Competition.

After the establishment of a Zero Waste Advisory Board, the municipality of Svilengrad aims to: 

  • Achieve 90% diversion of municipal solid waste (MSW);
  • A target of 99 (kg/resident/year) in 2025 for the annual amount of residual waste generated per resident; 
  • Reduce the volume of MSW sent to incineration, building awareness around sustainable alternative solutions; 
  • Increase awareness of zero waste and circular economy principles within its community, using a wide range of communication methods and channels.

‘Svilengrad has a long-term vision within its Zero Waste Strategy, which includes various innovative solutions that we will achieve thanks to the Zero Waste Cities Certification. We are committed to working hard with our residents for a cleaner environment.’

said Arch. Anastas Karchev, Mayor of Svilengrad.

‘We’re extremely excited and proud that Svilengrad will become the first Bulgarian Zero Waste Candidate City. Svilengrad has shown strong leadership on this topic for several years now, since becoming part of the zero waste cities programme initially back in 2019. With their commitment to becoming certified, we’re excited to begin working with Svilengrad and our local member, Za Zemiata, to drive forward the municipality’s transition to zero waste and make it a flagship town in this field within both Bulgaria and Europe as a whole.’

said Jack McQuibban, Coordinator of the Cities Programme at Zero Waste Europe.

Svilengrad’s zero waste commitment strikes an important momentum for Bulgaria and the whole Europe, a clear sign that advocates for a more sustainable and circular future

Want to know more about the Zero Waste Cities Certification? Find out more here.

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