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Last update:May 08, 2019

Item Status Links
National adaptation strategy
  • Being developed
National Adaptation Plan
  • Being developed
Impacts, vulnerability and adaptation assessments
  • Completed
Research programs
Meteorological observations
Climate Projections and Services
CC IVA portals and platforms
Monitoring, Indicators, Methodologies
Monitoring Mechanism Regulation
  • Last reporting on Adaptation (Art. 15) submitted
National Communication to the UNFCCC
  • Last National Communication Submitted

 

The Ministry of Environment and Water (MOEW) is the central body coordinating the adaptation policy-making process.

Adaptation Strategies

Bulgaria has a committed to developing a National Adaptation Strategy (NAS) in accordance with Article 10 paragraph b of the Kyoto Protocol. At the national level, under the Climate Change Mitigation Act, the MOEW has initiated a process towards the development of a NAS to reduce the country's vulnerability to the effects of climate change and improve the capacity to adapt the natural, social and economic systems to the inevitable negative impacts of climate change.

Considering the substantial expertise and significant data collection required to develop such strategic documents, a stepwise approach was adopted. As a first step, a Framework document titled "National Climate Change Risk and Vulnerability Assessment for the Sectors of the Bulgarian Economy" was prepared, and finalized in early June 2014. The Framework document served as a basis for the further development of the NAS. Therefore, all the collected and evaluated information set the grounds for the development of specific measures, which should represent the strategic actions that reduce the vulnerability of the country to the effects of climate change.

The competent authorities were involved in the development of measures for each sector, as well as NGOs and the scientific community. Further actions were taken to finish developing the NAS, as the MOEW, in partnership with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, implemented the project "National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan," which was financed under the Operational Programme "Good Governance 2014-2020."

The MOEW, as the body coordinating the development of the NAS, is guided by the EU Adaptation Strategy. The NAS builds on the National Climate Change Risk and Vulnerability Assessment of the Bulgarian Economic Sectors (MOEW 2014) and draws extensively on the information, analyses, and recommendations of nine sector assessment reports, the Disaster Risk Management Assessment report, and the report on the Macroeconomic Implications of Climate Change. The long-term objective of the Strategy is to proactively pursue long-term, high-impact economic, social and ecological resilience and sustainability, and to allow Bulgaria's citizens, private sector and public institutions to adequately prepare and protect themselves against vulnerabilities deriving from climate change. The document covers the period up to 2030.

The Third National Action Plan on Climate Change 2013-2020 also defines a small number of adaptation measures in the agriculture and forestry sectors.

Monitoring, reporting and evaluation

The National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan includes a chapter that establishes the process of monitoring and reporting the progress made in implementing the measures set out in the Action Plan and the requirements of performance indicators.

Schedule and planned review/revision

As mentioned above, the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan includes a chapter that establishes the process of monitoring and reporting, which will be performed in accordance with the recently approved Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union. Pursuant to the Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union, reporting on national adaptation actions will be performed every 2 years, starting in 2021. Progress on the implementation of measures envisaged in the Action Plan under the Strategy will be assessed in one mid-term and one final official report, to be drafted and presented to the Council of Ministers in 2025 and in 2031, respectively. The performance will be strengthened and further refined based on experience gained from implemented activities.

 

The draft for the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan for the Republic of Bulgaria sets a framework for climate change adaptation (CCA) action and priority directions up to 2030, identifying and confirming the need for CCA action both at economy-wide and sectoral levels.

Sectors addressed in NAS/NAP

The sectors included in the Strategy are agriculture, biodiversity and ecosystems, energy, forestry, human health, transport, tourism, urban environment and water. Disaster-risk management is also considered as a cross-sectoral topic. One of the sections in the NAS briefly outlines the nature of cross-cutting issues, tradeoffs, and synergies in relation to CCA in Bulgaria. The focus is on the interrelationships in the context of the adaptation strategy and actions. Moreover, interdependencies in the context of risks and vulnerabilities are also addressed in the Strategy. More detailed assessment of specific cross-cutting issues, tradeoffs, and synergies can also be found in the sector assessment reports.

With regards to existing adaptation measures, the forestry sector is the only one in which a specific programme of measures has been developed and approved. The Executive Forest Agency has presented a Program of Measures to Adapt Forests in the Republic of Bulgaria and Mitigate the Negative Impact of Climate Change on Them. The document was officially adopted by the Ministry of Agriculture, Foods and Forestry on 03.05.2011.

At the sectoral level, there are a number of documents relevant to adaptation policy:

  • In 2018 the National Disaster Risk Reduction Strategy 2018-2030 was adopted. The document analyzes the current situation in regard to specific risks including earthquakes, floods, landslides, forest fires, storms, snowfall and extreme temperatures. The vision of the strategy is to ensure a resilient and safe environment for the Bulgarian population. The expected outcome of its implementation is to prevent new risks and reduce the existing ones in order to achieve resilience.
  • The National Forest Strategy 2013-2020 includes measures for strengthening the resilience of forest ecosystems to climate change.
  • The objective of the Common Strategy for Management and Development of Hydro-melioration (Irrigation and Drainage) and Protection Against Harmful Effects of Water-is to develop a functioning and viable Hydro-melioration Sector in Bulgaria, which enables more sustainable and productive use of water and irrigated land. The strategy envisages Hydro-melioration to manage the infrastructure for the provision of irrigation and drainage services and to oversee the infrastructure for flood protection and river corrections that protect agricultural land from harmful effects of water.
  • In 2017 the Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change for Sofia Municipality was adopted. The objectives and the scope of the Strategy are to define and analyze the vulnerability and the potential risks of climate change for Sofia Municipality. The Strategy presents the municipality’s framework for adaptation to climate change up to 2020. It also sets out concrete measures for adaptation and converting a long-term strategy into action and achievable results.
  • Sofia Municipality is currently working on an Implementation Plan for the Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change, which will set out concrete actions for each of the adaptation measures. The Plan will cover the period 2018-2025 and the actions set out in it will be subject to the monitoring of implementation.
  • The Operational Programme Environment 2014-2020 provides a separate Priority Axis 4 - Prevention and Flood Risk Management, which is directly linked to climate change. Measures envisaged under Priority Axis 4 of the program are aimed at providing resistance to disasters, preventing risk to human health and the environment and mitigating the consequences of floods.
  • In 2016 the Flood Risk Management Plans (FRMP) 2016-2021 were adopted for water management in each basin. The FRMP examine all aspects of risk management, focusing on prevention, protection and preparedness, including flood forecasts and early warning systems, accounting for the characteristics of the basin water management for a period of six years. The Plans include programs of specific measures or combination of measures to resolve the identified problems and achieve the objectives for each of the designated 116 areas with considerable potential risk of flooding in the country. The responsible authorities, the deadline for implementation of the measures and sources of funding are specified in the Plans. The MOEW started the implementation of a project that aims to plan flood risk management for the second cycle of the Floods Directive, considering the impact of climate change on the four river basin districts by developing flood risk management plans for the period 2022-2027.

Observations and projections

Climate change is monitored by the National Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology at the Bulgarian Academy of Science (NIMH-BAS). The Institute has several weather stations included within the Regional Basic Synoptic Network and Regional Basis Climatological Network in RA VI (Europe) - about 40 synoptic and more than 90 climatic stations across the country. There are no Global Surface Network or Global Upper Air Network stations in Bulgaria. There is only one Global Atmosphere Watch station in the country (Rojen). The National Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology is the chief executive of research and operational activities in Meteorology, Agrometeorology and Hydrology in Bulgaria.

The Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (BAS) is the leading scientific institution in the country with long-established and well-deserved international recognition. It carries out research and development activities on climate change, examining fluctuations, adaptation of the individual sectors, etc. The National Institute of Geophysics, Geodesy and Geography at BAS provides operational, monitoring and expert information, analyses and assessments in the field of seismology, earthquake engineering, geography, current tectonics, physics of the atmosphere and ionosphere and environmental magnetism. Much of the current knowledge regarding the observation of extreme climate events and their impacts derives from IPCC reports or from EU-funded projects (e.g. CLAVIER project funded by FP6). Scenarios and projections for the coming decades derive from the CLAVIER and CECILIA projects mentioned above or from the HadCM3 model.

Impact and Vulnerability Assessment

In early June 2014 the Framework document “National Climate Change Risk and Vulnerability Assessment for the Sectors of the Bulgarian Economy” was finalized. A team of scientists assessed the risk of climate change related natural disasters, which for Bulgaria are typically based on climate models and scenarios, presented in the Fourth and Fifth IPCC Reports. The analysis is for the period until 2035. The Framework document covers the following sectors: agriculture, forestry, water, urban environment, energy, transport, construction and infrastructure, ecosystems and biodiversity, human health and tourism.

The analysis indicates that the vulnerability of the country in terms of hydro-climatic risk is moderate in the current state, but there are real preconditions to increase vulnerability after 2035. This could happen sooner due to the projected impacts of climate change in the region, as well as from adverse demographic processes that are expected to deepen in the future. An insufficient capacity in the sectors of the Bulgarian economy to adapt to climate change is another factor contributing to the increased vulnerability of the country.

It should be emphasized, however, that the analysis shows positive trends in terms of building the necessary adaptation capacity. Parts of the National Adaptation Strategy were elaborated in nine sectoral assessments. Their major goal is to assess, in perspective, all possibilities for development of the respective sector until 2030 and the key vulnerabilities related to climate change including:

  • a short assessment of the economic consequences from climate change;
  • challenges and impacts; and
  • suggested measures for adaptation.

Research

National policy in the field of research is conducted by the Ministry of Education and Science in cooperation with the other ministries, institutions and organizations.

Monitoring progress

The National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan includes a chapter that establishes the process of monitoring and reporting of progress in the implementation of the measures set out in the Action Plan and the requirements of performance indicators.

Governance

The MOEW, within it the Climate Change Policy Directorate, is responsible for carrying out the assessment and planning and preparing a National Adaptation Strategy. Horizontal coordination mechanisms exist within the governance system with division of responsibilities. The 2014 Climate Change Mitigation Act clarifies the responsibilities of different institutions with regards to climate change, including adaptation.

Horizontal coordination currently is focused on the preparation of the National Adaptation Strategy. Institutions with responsibilities for integration of climate change (both mitigation and adaptation) include: the Ministry of Agriculture, Foods and Forestry; the Ministry of Energy; Ministry of Economy; the Ministry of Transport; Information Technologies and Communications; the Ministry of Finance; the Ministry of Interior; the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works; the Ministry of Health; the Ministry of Education and Science; the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy; the Executive Agency of Environment; the Bulgarian Academy of Science; and the National Association of Municipalities and Non-profitable Legal Persons. Relevant ministries oversee climate change adaptation in their respective sectors.

Article 3, paragraph 4 of Climate Change Mitigation Law governs the establishment of the National Expert Council on Climate Change as an advisory body to assist the Minister of Environment and Water in the elaboration of positions and statements and in taking initiatives to fully implement the state policy on mitigation and adaptation to climate change. It consists of representatives from the governmental sector, the National Association of Municipalities in Republic of Bulgaria, Regional governmental authorities, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, environmental NGOs and business. To ensure efficiency and coordination between competent institutions, the MOEW established a National Coordination Council on Climate Change (comprising representatives of government ministries and agencies, at the Deputy-Minister level), with a view of raising awareness on climate change risks and adaptation options, strengthening consensus on climate action and fostering climate networks for the successful implementation of resilience (and mitigation) measures (including such networks as the Expert Council and Coordination Council), as well as enhancing capacity to integrate adaptation considerations in policies, programs and investments.

Knowledge

Publications in connection with climate change (including adaptation) can be found on the MOEW’s website. The most important documents are published on the website, along with green advise, different campaigns and competitions. In the process of preparing the NAS, a number of initiatives were conducted to raise awareness and encourage public participation in its development, such as workshops, sector consultation sessions, meetings of the National Expert and Coordination Councils on Climate Change, institutional stakeholder meetings, press conferences and information to companies in different Bulgarian municipalities.

In 2014, Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski" began a master program on Climate Change and Water Management. The program is focused on the preparation of highly qualified specialists for analysis and assessment of climate change and integrated water resources management.

Ministry of Environment and Water of Republic of Bulgaria

Climate Change Policy Directorate

Mail climatechange@moew.government.bg

Website https://www.moew.government.bg/ 

[Disclaimer]
The information presented in these pages is based on the reporting according to the Monitoring Mechanism Regulation (Regulation (EU) No 525/2013) and updates by the EEA member countries