Scaling-up Energy Communities in Bulgaria

In the wake of the EU’s latest Renewable Energy Directive (RED-II), EU Member States are required to take steps to support the development of prosumers and of energy communities. For countries with complex histories of forced collectivization followed by poorly-implemented privatizations, making the case for community and/or citizen-financed renewable energy projects can be an uphill battle.

In many respects, Bulgaria provides a valuable case study, as many of the challenges it faces are shared by many other countries throughout the EU: Bulgaria has excellent and largely untapped solar resources, and it faces an urgent need to create new jobs, attract young people back to the country, and inject new dynamism into the economy. In order to accelerate dialogue in the country on energy communities, this report provides an overview of the current landscape, highlights a few municipalities taking steps to establish community-based energy projects, and puts forward a few recommendations to help make energy communities a bigger part of the overall energy mix.