From July 5, 2022, the work of the Advisory Council for the European Green Deal will start again. The Council was chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister for Climate Policies and Minister of the Environment and Water, Borislav Sandov, who resigned. The Advisory Council is the body that is expected to set the framework for the upcoming reforms and investments for decarbonization and modernization of the Bulgarian economy. The outgoing Minister of Energy, Alexander Nikolov, also took part in the event.
"The damage that climate change is already doing will cost us more and more. Valuable decades were lost in postponing the urgent, and many nations found themselves hostage to old understandings, technologies and development models. The desire to follow the path of least resistance, it turns out, leads backward, not forward. However, challenges are also opportunities. Climate change may prove to be the greatest economic opportunity of this century. And if it is true that intelligence is measured by our ability to deal with challenges and take advantage of opportunities, then it is our common duty to approach both the problem and the opportunities arising from it sensibly," said the Deputy Prime Minister.
Since its establishment more than two years ago, the Council has held two meetings without succeeding in establishing a workable mechanism for dialogue with stakeholders. The new government has introduced changes to the working mechanism to ensure wider participation in proposing solutions on the way to decarbonization. For this purpose, departmental committees have been formed that will focus work on specific topics: energy transition, sustainable mobility, energy efficiency and overcoming energy poverty, taxonomy and sustainable finance, circular economy, adaptation to climate change, as well as communication of green processes transformation.
The EU budget foresees over BGN 15 billion for Bulgaria, against which our country must carry out reforms and invest in solutions contributing to the energy independence and climate neutrality of our economy. The process will be complex and to be successful it needs to be managed transparently, with the participation of all interested parties.
"In the work of forming this Council, we tried to set the framework in such a way as to include all interested parties in making the important decisions on the way to decarbonization of our economy. We strive to work in a transparent and open manner. Let's build trust with each other and show together that this is the right way, regardless of who is at the head of the government. The green transformation will happen with or without us. But the quick reaction, the right moves and the support of society is the combination that will bring us to the side of the winners from the irreversible changes that the world is facing at the moment", stressed Deputy Prime Minister Sandov.
In its meeting, the Council adopted an annual program and set the date July 8, 2022 for the launch of the Energy Transition Commission (ETC). The Commission for Sustainable Mobility (SCM) will hold its first meeting next week. Applications for membership can be submitted until Thursday, July 7, and organizations, institutions and business representatives with proven expertise and experience in the specified fields can participate in the work of the commissions. After the first meetings of KEP and KUM, the Advisory Council for the Green Deal will open an invitation for inclusion in the other departmental committees.
In this process, Bulgaria must develop capacity and a mechanism for active dialogue within the framework of the reforms of the Recovery Plan, the decarbonization policies and the goals within the framework of the European Green Deal.