Bulgaria Ranked as Major EU Industrial Polluter Despite Small Economy

Industry | November 24, 2011, Thursday // 12:58|  views

Bulgaria's Maritsa East 2 TPP has been estimated as the second biggest industrial air polluter in the EU. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria is among EU's biggest industrial polluters by size of economy alongside Romania, Estonia, Poland and the Czech Republic, according to a report of the European Environment Agency (EEA) released on Thursday.

The study, compiled on the basis of data for 2009 including carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, shows Germany and Poland as the biggest industrial polluters in the EU, followed by Britain, France, Italy, Romania and Spain.

If, however, the EU's industrial polluters are ranked by the size of their econony, Bulgaria, Romania, Estonia, Poland and the Czech Republic come on top of EEA's ranking.

According to calculations of the EU's environmental watchdog, the EU"s 10 000 biggest industrial facilities incurred polution-related "damage costs" worth EUR 102 - 169 B.

Most of the pollution is caused by large power plants, and, to a lesser extent, refineries and steelworks.

While the EEA admitts that the so-called "damage costs" are an imperfect, scientific measure of the human health and environmental cost of pollution, the watchdog maintains that it is still a useful indicator to guide EU choices on industrial, energy and environmental policy.

A Thursday publication of Capital daily commenting on EEA's report informs that the Maritsa East 2 Thermal Power Plant (TPP) ranks second on the list of industrial facilities estimated as having the greatest damage costs from emissions of selected pollutants to air.

According to the report, the Maritsa East 2 TPP, the largest thermal power plant on the Balkan Peninsula, incurs damages worth EUR 1.4 - 3.3 M, depending on the methodology used.

The EEA's list of the top 50 air polluting industrial facilities includes three other Bulgarian entities - the Brikel and the Bobov Dol TPPs, which rank 40th and 41st, respectively, and the Varna TPP, which lands at 82nd place.

According to EEA data, air pollution from industrial facilities incurred costs of EUR 200-330 for each EU citizen in 2009.

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Tags: Maritsa East 2, thermal power plant, air pollution, European Environment Agency, Brikel, Bobov Dol


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