Geography and ecology

Bulgaria is situated on the border between Asia and Europe, in the heart of the Balkan Peninsula. In its relatively small area 110 912 km2 we encounter an astonishing variety of landform forms. Extending from the banks of the Danube, the Danube Plain rises towards the hills of Stara Planina. This mountain range crosses the northern part of the country from the Black Sea to Yugoslavia. Rejon srednej gory (Antibalkan) it is separated from the main strip by a valley, which is the railway line from Sliven to Sofia. About 70% world rose oil production, used in the production of cosmetics and perfumes, comes from the Valley of Roses near Kazanłyk.

South Bulgaria is even more mountainous. Musala (2925 m) in the Rila band, south of Sofia, is the highest peak between the Alps and the Caucasus. Only Wichren is equal to him (2915 m) in the Pirin Mountains. Smoothed by a glacier, naked, rocky peaks, the deep forested valleys and glacial lakes of the Rila Mountains lie in the heart of the Balkans and are a hiker's paradise. Not far south of Bańsko is the National Park. You can get there by train from Pazardzhik.

The Rhodope Mountains extend east of the Rila and Pirin Mountains, along the border with Greece, separating the Aegean Sea from the Highland Plain, in central Bulgaria. This lowland ends with the Black Sea coast. Here, in the region of Burgas and Varna, you can meet many bays and coastal lakes. Long, Sandy beaches, stretching along the coast, are among the most beautiful in Europe.

There are railroads from Sofia: along the river Iskyru towards the Danube, along the Maritsa River to the southeast, towards Turkey and south, along the Struma River, towards Greece. About one third of Bulgaria's territory is covered by forests. In the lowlands, these are deciduous forests, and in the mountains, conifers.

As in many post-communist countries, the desire to get rich quickly decides to stop planning development taking into account environmental protection. In protected areas, poaching and logging disturb the peace of these species, like the white stork or the chestnut vulture. The bear population in Bulgaria continues to decline, although it is a bit more numerous at the moment, thanks to animals from war-torn areas of Yugoslavia.

Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant, away by 200 km north of Sofia, is included in the group 25 the most dangerous nuclear facilities in the world. Since its opening in 1974 r. there have been minor breakdowns there, forcing the partial shutdown of reactors and thus a reduction in electricity supplies throughout the country. It is located in Kozłoduy 6 heavy-water pressure reactors type WER-440, considered more dangerous than the RMBK Chernobyl reactors. W 1993 r., concerned Western governments allocated the quota 28 min $ for the implementation of the shutdown program of the Kozloduy reactors by the end of the century. So far, no steps have been taken in this direction. W 1990 r. public protests forced the Bulgarian government to stop the plans to build another nuclear power plant.

Bulgaria is now a democratic country with a parliamentary governance system.