National Recovery and Resilience Plan of the Republic of Bulgaria: Investment 2 (C4.I2): Support for renewable energy for households
The Ministry of Energy announced a public discussion on the procedure for supporting renewable energy for households including with construction of photovoltaic systems, pursuant to the National Recovery and Resilience Plan of the Republic of Bulgaria. The tentative date for launching the procedure itself is February 1st, 2023.
According to the published guidelines for applicants, eligible to apply are natural persons of Bulgarian nationality, nationals of another European Union member state or nationals of a third country with permanent resident status in the Republic of Bulgaria, who inhabit their own single-family home or their own apartment in a multiple-unit residential building. The home that is the subject of the application must be the principal dwelling of the applicant and the purpose of the application must be to replace an inefficient source of heat energy (a heater, a boiler, a fireplace, etc.) using solid fuel (firewood, coal, etc.). The applicant must have paid any local taxes and real estate taxes for the home where the installation or system is to be set up, due towards the time of application. An applicant whose own single-family home or whose own apartment in a multiple-unit residential building that is the subject of the application is used for business purposes, or is rented out, or is used for commercial purposes by a company listed in the Commercial Register, or by a legal entity listed the Register of non-profit legal entities, shall not be deemed eligible. Applicants must apply individually, rather than jointly with a partner or another organization.
The total amount of grant funding allocated for this procedure stands at BGN 59,840,000, of which BGN 49,870,000 comes from EU funding: NextGeneration EU, while BGN 9,970,000 is national co-financing.
The funds under this procedure are divided into two components:
Under Component 1, funding will be provided for the purchase of photovoltaic installations for domestic hot water (DHW) supply, the hot water generated by which will be used for satisfying the applicant’s own needs; the maximum amount granted to a project proposal will be up to 100% of the cost of the installation, but not exceeding BGN 1,960.83. Pursuant to the provisions of the Spatial Development Act, solar installations for DHW do not require approval of a development project for a building permit for their assembly. At the same time, the law poses a requirement that applications for this type of works must be accompanied by an expert opinion issued by a design engineer, an electrical engineer and/or a heating engineer, supported by the relevant drawings, diagrams, calculations and execution instructions. Said opinion must explicitly state that the heat energy generated will be used by the applicant for meeting their own hot water needs.
Under Component 2, funding will be provided for the purchase of photovoltaic systems of up to 10 kWp installed capacity, including electricity storage systems, with the maximum amount granted to a project proposal being up to 70% of the cost of the system, but not exceeding BGN 15,000. In other words, households will need to co-finance the remaining 30% of the cost under this component. The electricity generated and/or stored must solely be intended for the end consumer’s own use in their own home. No sale of electricity generated and/or stored will be allowed. Pursuant to the provisions of the Renewable Energy Act, an end consumer is allowed to build facilities for electricity generation from renewable sources on roofs and facades of buildings connected to the electricity distribution network and on adjacent pieces of real estate in urban areas, the power generated by which is to be used for the owner’s own consumption. The consumer must notify the operator of the distribution network to which the facility is connected. The operator will then issue a supplement to the access and transmission agreement with the end consumer stating the technical requirements for the connection scheme of the power generation facility to the end consumer’s electric installation while also regulating the rights and obligations of the parties in order to guarantee the security of the electric power system and prevent unauthorized inflow of electric power and disruptions in the electricity distribution network. No building permit is required, pursuant to the Spatial Development Act, for assembly of such an energy facility with a total installed capacity of up to 20 MW. In such a case, the applicant must, not later than 14 days prior to commencement of assembly of the installation, submit a notification to the chief architect of the municipality, describing the power of the proposed installation and its exact location; enclosed with said notification must be the designs for the proposed installations, grouped in the following sections: ‘Structures’, ‘Electric’ and/or ‘HVAC’, supported with drawings, diagrams, calculations, technical specifications and execution instructions guaranteeing the safe operation of the proposed installation while ensuring its protection against return of power into the electricity distribution network, when the building is connected to the latter. Following completion of the setting up of the installations, the owner of the property where they are being set up, together with the contractor or a legal/authorized representative thereof must sign a declaration whereby they must notify, within 14 days from the completion of the engineering works, the chief architect of the municipality and the operator of the electricity distribution network, where the building is connected to one, that the installation is energized and has been completed in accordance with the technical documentation.
The recipient of the grant for renewable energy for households is required to operate and maintain in working order the investment under Component 1 or Component 2 for at least three years following completion of the project. Compliance with that requirement will be verified by on-site inspections.
The cash grant may be applied for after the installations or photovoltaic systems are already completed, i.e., households will have to finance the construction and engineering works on their own, and then apply for reimbursement of costs.
The filing of the application for support for renewable energy for households and the evaluation of proposals will be done entirely in digital format using the Information System of the Recovery and Resilience Facility (EUMIS 2020, Section ‘National Recovery and Resilience Plan’).
The draft terms of application and implementation have been promulgated for a public discussion in the Information System of the Recovery and Resilience Facility EUMIS 2020 at: https://eumis2020.government.bg/bg/s/Procedure/InfoPublicDiscussion/d5358ff6-70f3-49ba-96f1-ce8790300fb2