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20th Anniversary of NTEF

The National Trust EcoFund celebrated its 20th Anniversary on the 9th and 10th March 2015.

Significant results in protecting the environment have been achieved by projects, financed from international donors through the National Trust EcoFund.

What delineates the National Trust EcoFund from other project funding institutions is its relative managerial independence from the government and its high level of control by the international donors. The main governing body is the Board of Directors (BoD) which is comprised by equal number of members from the government and from nongovernmental organisations. The chair of the BoD is elected by the Council of Ministers, only after the approval of the Advisory Committee of donors and cannot be politically affiliated to a party or to the public administration. In addition, the Advisory Committee of donors consults and confirms every decision of the Board of Directors.

The Fund is established in 1995 by the active support of the World Bank and the Swiss Government which is also its first donor within the framework of the swap deal Debt for Environment. These institutions developed the Fund’s managerial model, preserved and applied even now.

During its 20 years of existence, the Fund’s has operated financial resources from Switzerland, Austria, the USA, the Bulgarian government and the World Bank. Projects have also been financed by the Danish Environmental agency. The successfully completed projects can be categorized in four main environmental objectives:

  • mitigating climate change and preserving the air quality;
  • remediation of old pollution;
  • protecting the quality of waters;
  • preserving biodiversity;

The projects have achieved the following significant positive results for the environment:

  • the implementation of energy efficiency measures in 77 public buildings achieved reduction of greenhouse gases for the project lifetime – 443 844 t CO2/eqv.
  • 420 722 m3 of waste have been removed from both regulated and illegal landfills in 202 living areas;
  • accomplished gasification of 201 public buildings;
  • installed 2 plants for purification of gases emitted by Thermal power stations;
  • installed 3 low nitrogen energy boilers for burners;
  • entirely mitigating the severe environmental contamination of the MDK copper smelter Pirdop prior to its privatization;
  • the construction of 1 waste water pumping station, 2 waste water treatment stations, 6 main sewage collectors with length of 9752 m and 7 delivery and sewage collectors with total length of 7046 m;
  • developed 6 eco trails with total length of 34 930 m, rehabilitation of 6 protected areas, and successful introduction of 2 species in protected areas.

NTEF’s celebrations were attended by its founders Mrs. Kristalina Georgieva, professor Valentin Bosevski, the former Minister of Environment and Waters by the time of negotiating the swap deal and consecutively, the chair of BoD of NTEF, the current minister of Environment and Waters, Mrs. Ivelina Vasileva, the Ambassadors of international donors – Austria and Switzerland, former ministers and deputy ministers of Environment and Waters, of Economy and Energy, of Agriculture and Forests who were members of the BoD of NTEF, representatives of parliament, mayors of many municipalities, rectors of universities, directors of schools and hospitals, nongovernmental organisations who have received funding from NTEF, partners and friends.

During the official ceremony, two Awards of Honour for the 20th Anniversary of NTEF were awarded:

  • A Placket of Honour – for founders and donors of NTEF;
  • A Certificate of Honour – for all who have supported and contributed the NTEF’s activities and accomplishments.

During the official ceremony, two Awards of Honour for the 20th Anniversary of NTEF were awarded:

  • A Placket of Honour – for founders and donors of NTEF;
  • A Certificate of Honour – for all who have supported and contributed the NTEF’s activities and accomplishments.
The event was conducted with the financial support of the World Bank through a capacity building project for NTEF.
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