Webinar: The European Green Deal in Bulgaria: Policy Options and Possible Solutions

(c) Todor Galev

"Considering the imminent global health and economic crisis, Bulgaria faces the challenge to achieve an effective energy transition within the European goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. It should use the existing opportunities for EU financial support adequately in order to transform its energy sector and put its long-term economic development on a more sustainable footing."

This was the main focus of the webinar "The European Green Deal in Bulgaria: policy options and possible solutions”, organized by the Center for the Study of Democracy on 19 May 2020. The discussion included presentations by Zhecho Stankov, Deputy Minister of Energy, Prof. Ivan Ivanov, Chairman of the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission, Delyan Dobrev, Chairman of the Energy Committee at the National Assembly (2014–2019), Boryana Kamenova, Director of the Climate Change Policy Directorate at the Ministry of Environment and Water, as well as CSD energy experts.

With the coal phase-out as the main topic of the webinar, Todor Galev from the Center for the Study of Democracy provided a short comment of the idea behind SCORE: offering new financial models for co-ownership of RES as a possible instrument for fostering the decentralisaiton in Bulgaria and more particularly as an instrument which could be applied in the process of restructuring the coal-intensive regions in Bulgaria. Moreover, Galev pointed out the fact that, according to different estimations, 35% and 60% of the population in Bulgaria are affected by energy poverty even though there is no national definition for "energy poverty". In addition, he remarked that the CSOP model is of particular benefit for vulnerable societal groups in the society, i.e. it is feasible to apply it in Bulgaria. Galev highlighted the especial potential of the SCORE model for substituting coal power plants (PPs) with RE parks located on the ground of current coal mines and coal PPs, which is one of the ideas for the "just transition" measures in Bulgaria.