Caputova Wins Goldman Prize for her Fight against Pezinok Landfill

Caputova wins Goldman Environmental Prize (photo by TASR)

Bratislava/ San Francisco, April 18 (TASR) – Slovak lawyer and activist Zuzana Caputova was among six awardees of the Goldman Environmental Prize for her fight against the Pezinok landfill, Goldman Environmental Foundation revealed on Monday.   

Caputova will receive the prestigious international award for her long-term fight against the landfill within the Via Iuris organisation, as well as legal work in the field of environmental protection on Monday evening in San Francisco.

Also called the environmental Nobel, the Goldman Prize has been awarded since 1990. Its laureates are nominated by renowned international environmental organisations and experts for a significant contribution in the field of environmental protection. They are selected by an international jury.

As well as making the laureates more visible, the prize also gives their work more exposure. The awards ceremony is annually held in San Francisco in tandem with Earth Day (April 22).

The Pezinok landfill case, which met with a huge resistance of local residents, made headlines for several years. It has now been closed and waste is no longer carried there, largely as a result of efforts of activists, as well as of the Pezinok municipality. The Supreme and the Constitutional Courts dealt with the case, as well as the European Court of Justice. Pezinok inhabitants also took their petition to the European Parliament.

Several protests were held against the landfill, not only in Pezinok, but also in front of Government Office and the Environment Ministry. The first big protest took place in 2008. The Supreme Court cancelled a permit for the landfill’s operation five years later. Pezinok residents were at that time represented by Caputova.

Caputova graduated from the Law Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava. She has been developing activities within the third sector since 1998 and cooperating with Via Iuris NGO as a lawyer since 2010. She is co-author of several publications and a member of the global network of environmental lawyers ELAW.