Boosting energy savings in Bulgaria

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The Kozloduy International Decommissioning Support Fund is supporting an innovative programme to boost energy savings and efficiency of public buildings in Bulgaria with a €5 million grant.

The government plans to reduce the energy consumption at Bulgaria’s approximately 6,000 municipal or state-owned buildings with an area of more than 1,000 square metres by up to 50 per cent by 2015. The necessary investments in insulation, refurbishments and heating controls are estimated to cost €250 million.

To finance these costs a scheme has been developed under which private companies are contracted by the authorities to implement energy saving measures and are paid for their services from future savings. This approach has two advantages: It allows municipalities to make crucial investments within their existing budgets and once the investment is repaid the municipality gets the full benefit of the energy savings.

The Fund’s €5 million grant will support the programme preparation, finance marketing efforts and provide training and advisory support. Furthermore, the funds will be used for the implementation of the programme, for instance through the preparation of detailed technical analysis of the building stock of participating municipalities.

Vince Novak, Director of the EBRD’s Nuclear Safety Department which is managing the Kozloduy Decomissioning Fund, said: “We are grateful to the donors of the Fund for agreeing on this important grant. Bulgaria has made strong efforts to boost energy savings in recent years and this new programme is expected to make a significant further contribution to improve the consumption of energy in the country.

The Kozloduy International Decommissioning Support Fund was established to support the decommissioning of units 1-4 of the Kozloduy nuclear power plant and the mitigating measures of the closure. Donor countries are: European Community, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, France, Greece, Spain, The Netherlands, United Kingdom and Switzerland.

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