The energy sector generates the most carbon emissions in Bulgaria. Our country's contribution to the climate goals of the European Union (EU) is small. A comprehensive concept of the green transition is missing. Russian gas must be replaced immediately. These are the conclusions of the Agency for Economic Development of Germany - Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI), presented in the publication dedicated to climate protection "Bulgaria - Phasing out of coal is a top priority", announced by the German-Bulgarian Chamber of Industry and Commerce in its newsletter Bulgarien Aktuell, received at BTA.
The report provides information on the climate strategy, climate goals and climate laws in Bulgaria, on the necessary investments, as well as on the current situation in sectors such as energy, transport, industry, agriculture and forestry.
Dependence on fossil fuels is very high
Bulgaria has committed to contribute to the EU's climate protection goal by 2050 - the 27 member states want to jointly reduce emissions of climate-harmful gases by 55 percent by 2030 compared to 1990. For this purpose, the Ministry of Energy updated the Integrated Plan in the field of energy and climate of the Republic of Bulgaria 2021-2030.
Climate targets: European Commission calls for greater commitment
Bulgaria needs to massively expand renewable energy sources and phase out coal power generation. So far, the largest sources of energy are nuclear and coal-fired power plants.
The biggest challenge of climate change in Bulgaria is the conversion of energy production from carbon-intensive to clean sources.
Investments: Bulgaria needs about 43 billion euros
In the energy transition, Bulgaria relies on a greater share of nuclear energy and renewable energy. For this, the country needs huge investments.
The Bulgarian government wants to phase out coal-fired power generation only in 2038. Renewable power generation capacity must increase by 7.5 gigawatts of installed capacity by 2030.
Structure of carbon emissions by sector in 2020
Energy: Bulgaria relies on renewable energies and hydrogen
The Bulgarian government is planning a long-term energy transition with solar and wind energy, as well as hydrogen. However, there are currently no incentives for investment, the German Economic Development Agency notes.
Over the next eight years, Bulgaria plans investments of over 4.5 billion euros to expand renewable energy sources. By 2030, the country wants to generate at least 27 percent of its electricity from renewable sources. To this end, the government is working hard to improve the framework conditions for investors in renewable energy.
Hydrogen should be an alternative
In addition, Bulgaria wants to replace about 1.1 percent of its fossil fuels with hydrogen on the way to climate neutrality from 2030. Entrepreneurs, stakeholders and politicians see the greatest potential in the use of energy from hydrogen in industry - for example, the production of ammonia, the raw material for nitrogen fertilizers - and in the transport sector.
Transport: The goal is more electromobility
In order for the air to be cleaner, Bulgaria needs climate-friendly mobility, for the development of which the EU is helping with about 1 billion euros in funding.
The Ministry of Transport proposed measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on roads. The agency is committed over the next eight years to work on reducing transport emissions, reducing fuel consumption, diversifying transport, promoting sustainable mobility, providing consumer information and training on environmentally friendly mobility.
The transport sector is the source of about one fifth of greenhouse gas emissions in Bulgaria. That is why Bulgaria needs investments in road infrastructure. Rail transport should also play a role in the changes in the Bulgarian transport sector. The country needs more multimodal terminals, the National Integrated Energy and Climate Plan states.