Measures in Bulgaria and Greece
To ensure the effective management of the project’s impact on biodiversity, a set of actions and measures were identified during the ESIA study, applied, and verified during the construction phase of the pipeline, and are being monitored during the operation phase:
- Actions to prevent or minimize likely adverse impacts on biodiversity, including general and specific preventative measures
- Actions to remediate likely adverse impacts on biodiversity, including restoration and offsetting measures
- Actions to enhance biodiversity, with a focus on Features of Conservation Importance (FCI), and particularly Priority Biodiversity Features (PBF) and Critical Habitats (CH).
EIB guidelines and standards for Environmental Protection
By following EIB guidelines and setting the highest standards for Environmental Protection and sustainable biodiversity, ICGB has established specific management tools initially during the construction phase and continuing by updating them during the operation phase:
- Route Environmental Impact Register (REIR) was developed to manage georeferenced data on environmental constraints, sensitivities, and the associated management actions. ICGB and its Contractors used the REIR to highlight risk and mitigation measures during the pipeline construction while now is maintained a dynamic planning and management tool
- Following the identification of sites, discrete Rapid Field Assessments (RFAs) were undertaken to medium/high-risk sites to prepare relevant reports to assess the potential severity and likelihood of impacts, and further inform the REIR
- Upon identification of a confirmed impact through an RFA, site files were prepared for all Environmental Key Areas in both host countries for both flora and fauna species
- Finally, to track the implementation progress and effectiveness, relevant Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) were identified at general and FCI-specific levels and ICGB continues to monitor during the pipeline operation.
ICGB has a planned 5-year monitoring period, during which the success of the reinstatement and bio restoration activities from the construction period will be checked according to specific Ecological Plans:
- Forest and Scrubland Monitoring Plan
- Riparian Habitats Monitoring Plan
- Grasslands Monitoring Plan
- Eutrophic Lakes Monitoring Plan
- Protected and/or Endemic Vascular Plants Monitoring Plan
- Invasive Flora Monitoring Plan
- Rocky Habitats Monitoring Plan
- Large Mammals Monitoring Plan
- Medium-sized and Small Mammals Monitoring Plan
- Birds Monitoring Plan
- Amphibian and Reptiles Monitoring Plan
- Freshwater Fish and Invertebrate Monitoring Plan
Gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria is co-financed by the European Union's
European Energy Programme for Recovery programme.
The sole responsibility of this publication lies with the author.
The European Union is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.