Bringing modern water treatment to a vibrant agricultural and tourist corner of Europe

New sewage works in the south east of Cyprus aims at improving living standards for just over five percent of the Cypriot population.

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EU funds help to bring state of the art sewage facilities to a region of Europe that currently has no modern sewage system. Until completion of the “Sewerage System of Kokkinochoria Complex” project, every householder in the Kokkinochoria area is responsible for the building, maintenance and operation of his or her own septic tank and absorption pit.

The project involves constructing a new system for the collection, conveyance and centralised treatment of urban sewage from the ‘Kokkinochoria Complex’. 11 new wastewater pumping stations will be installed, along with new transfer and mains systems to link the local communities.

432 jobs will be created during the project’s implementation, with a further 13 long-term jobs in place when construction is over.

Bringing the best to a precious area

‘Kokkinochoria’ is the Cypriot name for a group of villages in the South East of Cyprus, most of which are found inland from the main coastal resorts. The name means Red Soil Villages, and comes from the red earth that characterises the area. This particular soil gives the area its best known product: a particularly delicious potato known as kolocase. Local farmers cultivating the land for this crop can still regularly be seen around the Kokkinochoria.

The famous agricultural produce is not however the only reason why high quality water and sewage treatment is vital to the Kokkinochoria. The Red Soil Villages themselves make up a tourist attraction whose beauty and variety rival the Cypriot beaches as a holiday spot to be visited. Ancient Byzantine churches can be found dotted all around the area. Elsewhere, churches from the 13th to 16th centuries may be found to house old murals or a distinctive dome. Moving away from the rich religious world of the area, visitors may see a local folk art museum, or watch the fishermen mending their nets by hand. The area is also well known for its good cycle routes and bird watching sites.

Good green practice

The new sewage project is being carried out in line with strict EU environmental laws, notably the Environmental Impact Assessment Directive, which makes sure that works do not cause undue damage to the environment. The European Commission Environment Directorate delayed final approval of funds until it had received all necessary proofs of environmental safeguards from the Cypriot authorities.

Total and EU funding

The project “Sewerage System of Kokkinochoria Complex” has a total eligible cost of EUR 95 000 000, with the EU’s Cohesion Fund contributing EUR 64 866 475 over the period 2007-2013. A national contribution of EUR 19 748 813 has been made in addition to this. The project is funded through the "Basic Infrastructure in the field on Environment and Energy" priority of the Operational Programme “Infrastructure and Environment”.

Draft date