- Moldovan capital needs urgent response to growing waste problem
- €18 million in financing waste management backed by €5 million E5P grant, to which EU is largest contributor
- Project in Chisinau part of EBRD Green Cities initiative
The Moldovan capital Chisinau’s landfill will be cleaned up and the site will be upgraded to European Union (EU) standards thanks to a joint investment by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Eastern Europe Energy Efficiency and Environment Partnership (E5P) fund and the European Investment Bank (EIB).
The EBRD is providing a €9 million loan to the municipality, the EIB is expected to contribute another €9 million and the E5P Fund is extending a €5 million investment grant. E5P is a multi-donor and multi-international financial institution fund operating in all EU Eastern Partnership countries. In Moldova, it is supported by the European Union, the largest donor, as well as the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Lithuania, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Romania, the Slovak Republic and Sweden, the fund’s initiator and largest bilateral donor.
The loan and grant funds will be used to close a temporary dumpsite in the Ciocana district of Chisinau and rehabilitate the site, upgrade the Tintareni landfill in line with EU directives, rehabilitate the road leading to the landfill, refurbish the existing waste transfer station, invest in a waste-sorting plant and purchase waste collection and transportation trucks. Both locations will benefit from new landfill gas and leachate collection systems.
The goods, works and services will be procured following an open tendering process in line with the EBRD’s procurement rules and policies.
Ion Ceban, the Mayor of Chisinau, said: “The solid waste project, part of the EBRD's Green Cities initiative, is the largest waste management undertaking in Chisinau's history. It demonstrates that Chisinau is taking concrete steps to become a green and resilient city that invests in addressing its solid waste problems. Solutions would have remained on paper only had we not had the right financial instruments from partners and donors, this being a joint €23 million project with the EBRD and EIB, and includes an investment grant from the EU-backed E5P fund worth €5 million.”
Under the project, the city will also enhance the governance of the municipal waste management company to help it become more efficient, commercially viable and accountable.
Angela Sax, EBRD Head of Moldova, commented: “This will be a comprehensive overhaul of the waste management system in Chisinau and will have a direct impact on the lives of about a million people in and around the city. Waste consumption is predicted to increase by 5 per cent each year in both rural and urban areas and this major upgrade of unsanitary landfills is urgently needed. I welcome the commitment of the Chisinau municipality to prevent pollution and improve the urban environment.”
Nicholas Cendrowicz, European Union’s Deputy Head of Unit, NEAR C1 - Georgia, Moldova, Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, added: “We are proud that the substantial EU grant invested in the E5P initiative is delivering concrete results for the citizens of Chisinau. Investing in an integrated system that aims to prevent the production of waste, as well as proper sorting and recycling, fits perfectly with the rehabilitation of the landfill. This will significantly reduce harmful impacts on the environment, climate and on people’s health. We are convinced that this is just the beginning of a green transformation towards a more circular and low carbon economy and the EU is fully committed to support these efforts of the Republic of Moldova, for the benefit of its citizens.”
Anna Lyberg, Sweden’s Ambassador to Moldova, stated: “Ensuring a better environment and reduced climate impact is one of the priorities of Sweden’s development cooperation in Moldova, as it contributes to a better quality of life for women, men, girls and boys in the country. Sweden is supporting Moldova within the E5P because we consider that the development of municipal services, including through investment in infrastructure, has the chance to increase the quality of life and offer access to better opportunities for citizens. The Chisinau Solid Waste Management project is a good example of that, as it will contribute to the overall improvement of the environmental situation in Chisinau and its surrounding areas.”
The modernisation of waste management in Chisinau is part of the city’s commitment to improving the urban environment under EBRD Green Cities, the Bank’s flagship urban sustainability programme. Using proceeds from a previous EBRD loan and E5P support, the city is already refurbishing public buildings for greater energy efficiency. It has also developed an action plan that sets out priority measures and investment needs.
The EBRD is one of the largest institutional investors in Moldova. To date, it has invested around €1.4 billion in more than 135 projects in the country to support private businesses, key infrastructure and to build a greener and more sustainable economy.