SOFIA, Bulgaria, April 10 (UPI) -- Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev told a task team Friday to improve a garbage collection system that is threatening public health in the capital Sofia.
The team was formed a day after Stanishev's government declared a state of emergency to cope with a lack of adequate trash removal.
The poor waste-removal system is harming Sofia's ecology and public health,Sofia News Agency SNA reported.
Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov pledged his support to Stanishev in finding a lasting solution to the waste-collection problem that has been a longstanding issue, SNA said.
On Saturday, the Bulgarian government and Sofia City Hall formally opened contruction of a waste processing plant that should be completed within 18 months.
Sofia Mayor Boyko Borisov said the plant will meet European Union ecological standards, and that residents of a neighborhood where it is being built should have no complaints on pollution.