Differently than in the past, today environmental problems have local, national and international concern. The environmental problems in the Black Sea region are a good example for this phenomenon. These problems have affected all six countries that have shores with the Black Sea. The current study analyses these problems in detail. It intends to detect potential reasons for problems and provide suggestions to solve these problems by considering the economic dimensions. In addition, the impact of problems on the city life is examined. Also, the roles and importance of voluntary organizations on solving environmental problems are emphasized. (C) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.