For the 13th time in a row EE & RE, ‘Save the Planet‘ (Waste Management & Recycling), ‘Smart Cities‘ Conferences and Exhibitions showcased the latest useful solutions and technologies for sustainable development and ecology as well as for various industries and households.
Konstantin Delisivkov - the Bulgarian Deputy Minister of Energy, Krasimir Zhivkov - the Bulgarian Deputy Minister of Environment and Water, Violeta Komitova - the Bulgarian Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Public Works and Atanas Koundourdjiev - the Bulgarian Deputy Minister of Health opened the Forum. The event was under the auspices of the Ministry of Environment and Water, Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works and Sofia Municipality.
H.E. Alberto Trueba - Ambassador of Argentina in Bulgaria, Cinzia Bruno - Director of ICE Sofia Office; Venceslava Yanchovska - Manager of Innovation Norway Sofia and Traian Chebeleu - Deputy Secretary General of BSEC also welcomed the participants.
41 speakers from 11 countries delivered presentations with a practical focus within the specialized Conferences.
Session on geothermal energy was held in EE & RE Conference. The utilization of geothermal energy in Balkan countries was presented by Robert Gavriliuch, European Geothermal Council. There are numerous financing sources for the development of geothermal systems: Horizon 2020, Cohesion Funds, the European Regional Development Fund and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.
Juliet Newson from the International Geothermal Association spoke on the essence and need to develop geothermal systems for district heating networks. The situation in Bulgaria was presented by Vasil Kolikovski from Bulgarian Heat Pump Association.
The Argentine Ambassador in Bulgaria submitted a paper on the priorities of Argentina, following the target: 20% of the consumed energy in the country must be produced from renewable sources by 2025.
George Chavdarov, European Investment Bank announced ways to co-finance sustainable energy projects from EU Funds. He emphasized on the opportunities that JASPERS offers and for projects with lower investment threshold. The package Smart and clean energy was introduced to the audience by Anna Dimitrova, EURELECTRIC expert.
Innovation Norway Sofia realized Round table on the topic of ‘e-Health Enigma’ within the 5th edition of the ‘Smart Cities’ Conference.
Nayden Shivarov from the Bulgarian Ministry of Health emphasized that ‘the National Health Information System is a central point to which the components of e-Health in Bulgaria will be integrated. Anne Torill Nordsletta, Norwegian Centre for E-health Research shared the successful Norwegian experience and practices: citizens with easy and secure access to digital services in parallel to the well-worked-out national governance structure.
Nuria De Lama, Deputy General Secretary of the European Big Data Association informed about the concept of the intelligent city as a new business model. The presentation focused on some of the current initiatives at European level that have been undertaken for the creation of a single digital market.
Smart city solutions that govern urban resources were presented by John Lagogiannis, Intracom Telecom, Greece. The company has already implemented a pilot project in the Greek municipality Ilioupoli. Mr. Lagogiannis commented: "We are extremely satisfied that we can offer and provide the SEE municipalities decisions that a few years ago would have sounded like science fiction”.
The concept of circular economy was considered within the 8th Conference ‘Save the Planet’. 65% of municipal waste must be recycled in the Member States by 2030 and landfill to be reduced to 10% of municipal waste. Rozalina Petrova from DG Environment commented that we should adopt national instruments to stimulate recycling. The idea of circular economy is the waste to become a resource for production.
Session ITALY, organized by Sofia Office of ICE - Italian Trade Agency, covered topics such as mobile composting; microwave pyrolysis of discarded tires; innovative technologies for closed-loop system of waste - energy - compost - food; sustainable treatment of sludge and wastewater. The participating companies were Apiesse Srl, CAF Scril, Idro Group, Ladurner Ambiente and Hydro Italia Srl.
Nikolay Mihaylov from Sofia Municipality presented the integrated system of Sofia incl. the facilities for treatment of municipal waste in its three phases. Stefanie Scheidl from European Biogas Association spoke about the benefits of anaerobic digestion of sewage sludge and energy production of it. By 2020 Bulgaria should cease the disposal of sludge from sewage treatment plants and to start using it as a resource.
The presentations provoked interesting discussions with representatives of Bulgarian municipalities and business persons from different industry sectors: ecology, energy, construction, architecture, agriculture, food industry, facility management and utility sector, etc.
Greater part of the presented technologies could be seen in the parallel exhibitions:
74 exhibitors from 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Denmark, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, South Korea, Switzerland, Ukraine.
There were displayed machines and technologies for the treatment of various waste; waste recycling; composting facilities; cloud technologies in support of waste management; сogeneration plants; еnergy from waste; biogas plants for the food industry and agriculture, waste-water treatment plants; еnergy management; LED lighting; еnergy efficient heating and cooling systems - heat pumps, biomass boilers; еquipment for heating, air-conditioning and gas installations; systems for the production of pellets from wood, straw, sunflower husks, municipal/household waste; M2M, IoT, wireless technologies; building and home automation; Intelligent transport, fleet management, etc.
There were three collective participations:
Italian Pavilion, supported by Sofia Office of ICE - Italian Trade Agency
Traditional Austrian Pavilion with the promotional support of Advantage Austria Sofia
Norwegian participation, organized by Innovation Norway Sofia.
The exhibitions attracted over 3 000 trade visitors. The share of foreign ones was 17% from 29 countries: Austria, Belgium China, Dubai, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Macedonia, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, the UK.