This year's Southeast European Environmental and Sustainability Managers' Day took place on October 26, 2023, in Sofia under the theme "Sustainable Development". The event was organized by the Bulgarian section of the VNU and INNO-CON GmbH, with the generous support of Ekomax, the main sponsor, and DQS Bulgaria. As always, the event garnered significant interest from industry representatives, public administration, the scientific community, and experts. The topics discussed this year were highly relevant and of global significance.
The forum was opened by Mr. Ing. Heiko Schmidt, Honorary Consul of the Republic of Bulgaria in Germany and Coordinator of the VNU for Southeast Europe, and Ms. Reneta Koleva, Deputy Minister of Environment, who delivered a welcoming address to the organizers and participants. Ms. Koleva emphasized Bulgaria's clear long-term ambition to increase the share of renewable energy sources in the energy mix, including hydrogen and biogas.Prof. Daria Vladikova, Thracian University
Drawing from her extensive scientific experience, Professor Daria Vladikova from the Thracian University captivated the audience with an exceptionally interesting presentation on hydrogen and its role in the low-carbon industry of the future. She highlighted current and future technical possibilities for industrial applications of hydrogen and its use as a means of storing renewable energy.
The strategy for green gases by MITNETZ STROM was presented. MITNETZ is the largest regional electricity distribution network operator in Eastern Germany, responsible for the planning, operation, and marketing of the electricity grid. A few months ago, our leading auditor, Svoboda Schmidt, on behalf of DQS, awarded the ISO 9001 certificate to MITNETZ after a successful certification process. With the "Hydrogen Village Bitterfeld" project, the company received the Innovation Award from the German Gas Industry in 2022 in the "Applied Research" category. The discussion on becoming independent from natural gas is growing, and in the future, green hydrogen could become an integral part of the energy mix, revolutionizing current gas supplies by integrating renewable electricity. The company is creating the conditions for the integration of 100% hydrogen into its distribution networks, thereby facilitating a sustainable reduction of carbon emissions.
In the second panel, Mr. Jaroslav Stalewski, Business Development Manager for Eastern Europe at A-Gas, and Ms. Margarita Yankova, EcoStart Bulgaria, the official representative of A-Gas in Bulgaria, presented specific technical solutions for the safe, environmentally friendly, and legally compliant use of refrigerants.Dipl.-Ing. Svoboda Schmidt was connected remotely online
Building on last year's themes, the event continued with the presentation of EU Directive 2022/2464 on corporate sustainability reporting, European standards for sustainability reporting (ESRS), and their comparison with ISO standards. In a lively and informative discussion, Ms. Svoboda Schmidt, the leading auditor at DQS for numerous environmental and sustainability standards and one of the first auditors for greenhouse gases in accordance with ISO 14064 in Europe, along with Mr. Hans-Jürgen Fengler, Global Product Manager for ESG Services at DQS, shared their experiences in greenhouse gas accounting within large international companies and provided guidance to participants on the accounting and verification of greenhouse gases.
The participants at the forum expressed their satisfaction with the provided information, which supports businesses and administrative authorities in making pragmatic and sustainable decisions in favor of climate and the environment.
You can download the presentations from the event by clicking on the blue links:
Dipl.-Ing. Heiko Schmidt (Honorary Consul of the Republic of Bulgaria in Germany, Coordinator of VNU for Southeast Europe, Managing Director of DQS Bulgaria) provided a retrospective view of the Environmental Manager Day, its organizers, and sponsors.
(BG) Heiko Schmidt - Short History of the ESMD
Prof. Daria Vladikova (Thracian University) presented a detailed overview of the progress in hydrogen technologies in Bulgaria to date and outlined the prospects for their future development.
(BG) Daria Vladikova - Hydrogen Technology Bulgaria
Mr. Jaroslaw Stalewski (A-Gas Manager for Eastern Europe) introduced the participants to the achievements of his company in the life cycle management of refrigerants.
(EN) Jaroslaw Stalewski - Lifecycle Refrigerant Management
Mr. Christian Hristov (EcoStart Bulgaria, the official representative of A-Gas in Bulgaria) presented specific technical solutions for the safe, environmentally friendly, and legally compliant use of refrigerants currently available in the Bulgarian market.
(BG) Hristian Hristov - Waste Refrigerants Recovery
Mr. Hans-Jürgen Fengler (DQS, Global Product Manager ESG Services) conducted a detailed comparison between corporate sustainability directive and ISO standards.
(EN) Hans-Jürgen Fengler - CSRD Mapping with ISO-Standards