NOVA KAKHOVKA – In June 2023 the Russian military targeted Ukraine's Nova Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant, triggering an ecocide that strained the ecological resilience of the region. The polluted water added to the Black Sea's ongoing environmental degradation because of negligence and weak policies in the region.

On the night of June 6, 2023, the Russian military blasted Ukraine's Nova Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant in a grotesque act of military desperation. The act classified as an "ecocide" has pushed the limits of the region's ecological resilience.

The resulting surge of poisoned water unleashed an ecological catastrophe upon the Black Sea, already choking from wartime neglect. But the environmental policies of the Black Sea region states have generally been weak and lack clear objectives, which has contributed to the fragility of the Black Sea ecosystem and the regional cooperation in addressing environmental challenges, such as pollution, has been inadequate due to the absence of a systemic framework and coordinated efforts.

Through a collaboration that was led and managed by the Investigative Media Lab, investigative journalists from six Black Sea countries – Ukraine, Georgia, Turkey, Romania, Moldova, and Bulgaria – have come together to measure the impact of the war on the already fragile ecosystem of the Black Sea and scrutinize how governments are responding to this new regional challenge.  

Photo credit: Nikcenter.org


Team members

Anna Gvarishvili

Anna Gvarishvili is a journalist and editor based in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Anna Gvarishvili

Cătălin Prisacariu

Cătălin Prisacariu is an investigative journalist based in Bucharest, Romania.

cătălin prisacariu

Nino Ramishvili

Nino Ramishvili is a Georgian journalist.

Olesia Boreiko  

Olesia Boreiko is a Ukrainian investigative journalist.


Olesia Boreiko  

Sukru Oktay Kilic

Sukru Oktay Kilic is a journalist based in Istanbul, Turkey.

Vitalie Calugareanu

Vitalie Calugareanu is a Moldovan journalist.

Vitalie Calugareanu

Atanas Tchobanov

Atanas Tchobanov is co-founder of the Bulgarian investigative website Bivol.bg, exposing the State-Mafia nexus in Bulgaria.

Oleg Oganov

Oleg Oganov is a Ukrainian investigative journalist and the founder of Nikcenter.


Studio Monitor

Studio Monitor is producing independent journalistic investigations in Georgia.

Studio Monitor

Fayn Prodüksiyon Anonim Şirketi

Fayn Studio, a new generation digital news & storytelling studio from Istanbul,Turkey.


Asociatia Doar Fapte

De Fapt is a Romanian online media outlet focusing on investigative stories but also publishing analyses and hard news.


NIKCENTER is an Ukrainian media project of the Mykolaiv Centre for Investigative Journalism, a non-profit NGO.



Data for Reporters, Journalists and Investigations is a NGO founded in June 2019 by 2 investigative journalists.

Data For Reporters, Journalists and Investigations

The Investigative Media Lab (IML)

The Investigative Media Lab was founded in September 2022 at the School of Social Sciences of the University of Georgia.

The Investigative Media Lab (IML)

James Fahn

James Fahn is a seasoned journalist and author, as well as the Global Director of Internews’ Environmental Programs.

James Fahn

need resources for your own investigative story?

Journalismfund Europe's flexible grants programmes enable journalists to produce relevant public interest stories with a European mind-set from international, national, and regional perspectives.


support independent cross-border investigative journalism

We rely on your support to continue the work that we do. Make a gift of any amount today.