Czech Republic

Czech Republic

Czech pollution reduction

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Two wind stations in the Czech Republic are going up as part of a cross border Czech-German environmental protection project backed by German funds. The first plant of 34 turbines, being developed privately, is slated for a site near Mikulov village in the hills of Krusn‡ Hory -- known by Germans as the Erzgebirge. The second project in line for support, also by a private investor, is slated for another site in the Krusn‡ Hory hills near Moldava village.

The news, which was of enough interest to be reported in the Czech press, is welcome as a stimulant for the national wind effort, reports Ivan Sladek of the Czech Wind Energy Association. The wind stations represent the first of five pilot projects to help reduce air and water pollution in the hills bordering the Czech Republic and south eastern Germany.

Simone Probst of the German environment ministry, Bundesumweltministeriu, says the agreement "will help our Czech neighbours, applying for entry to the European Union, to reach western environmental standards as soon as possible." The two countries' environment ministries struck the deal in December and total investment for all five projects is expected to be about DEM 111 million. The Saxony environment ministry and the environment office in Hamburg will together contribute some DEM 20 million in grants, soft loans and training exchanges. In addition, German development bank Deutsche Ausgleichsbank will offer cheap loans worth DEM 9 million. The Bavarian environment ministry is also participating.

The wind stations are expected to be built within the next four years as long as the details of the support are finalised.

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