Project philosophy

The main idea of the project is the undertaking of concrete actions and implementation of practical measures in implementation of the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan in the urban development field.


The project will contribute to the further cooperation at institutional and expert level between Bulgaria and the donor countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) as well as provide wide information about it. The Norwegian participant in the project (Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS)) and its partner (West Norwegian Research Institute (WNRI)) play a key role.


The consequences from the climate changes for the developed urbanized territories (the big cities) have been identified not only for Bulgaria but also at the European and global level. Everybody knows that in the short run these consequences will not be avoided. In addition to the efforts for reducing the impact on the climate change through eliminating or decreasing the greenhouse gas emissions, it is necessary to undertake adaptation measures for meeting the consequences of these changes as quickly as possible.

These changes are already here and we need to respond NOW!

For Bulgaria and the municipalities, which are involved in the project, they are mainly expressed in:

  • Heat island effect;
  • Alternation of urban floods from heavy rainfalls with periods of drought and drinking water shortage;
  • Urban landslides activation.

In the municipalities, the work on this issue is not starting now. But now, through this project, we have the opportunity to analyze the available information and accumulated experience and to experiment with non-traditional solutions that elsewhere produce results, as well as to update and complement the local climate action policies. We know that we will encounter certain elements of the regulatory framework, which will not allow us to fully implement our ideas, therefore we will prepare justified proposals for its updating aimed at responding to the new needs.

Project objective

The main objective of the project is to prepare the local authorities for the selection and implementation of concrete measures for adaptation to the climate changes in the big cities.

The result from the project will be the improved capacity of local the authorities to prepare for extreme weather events and reduce the greenhouse gas emissions through modernization of the local policies, dealing with the citizens, as well as innovative investment measures.

Total maximum project value: EUR 2 800 000

  • Financing from EEA FM – 85%
  • National financing – 15%

Project start: February 2021

Project end: April 2024


Expectations at project end:

  • Implemented eight innovative investment measures (one in each municipality), which will contribute to the prevention of the risks for the people and the infrastructure from the climate change consequences;
  • Prepared proposals for updating municipal strategic and planning documents, local legislation, etc.;
  • Prepared proposals for updating the national legislation, which will contribute to the climate change adaptation;
  • Prepared proposals for updating the curricula and syllabuses in the specialized educational institutions for construction, landscaping and urban development.


In order to achieve these results, the following actions shall be undertaken, which complement each other and use their result. They are coordinated during the project duration between the partners’ teams and the contractors:

  • Preparation of report on good practices and international experience, tailored to the identified needs of the involved municipalities, by the Norwegian partners. It includes analyses and examples from around the world, related to specific innovative measures, local and national level policies, as well as work with the stakeholders and change in the citizens’ behavior.
  • Development of a methodology for analysis of the existing practices, strategies and policies in each of the municipalities in order to assess the need for their updating, and to identify the demand for investment measures in the climate change adaptation field – implemented by a Bulgarian expert team.
  •  Provision of training to the teams of the municipalities:
    • Training of the expert teams of the municipal administrations, which shall prepare the analytical reports – includes using the report on the foreign experience and application of the methodology for the analysis and identification of the measures;
    • Study trips to Norway for the political managers and the expert teams of the partner municipalities for on-site familiarization with concrete successful practices;
    • Training of another 75 municipalities, which are not project partners, in order to motivate them to implement similar projects.
  • Preparation of analyses (based on the developed methodology) of existing and implemented strategies, plans, programs, projects in each of the eight municipalities – implemented by the expert teams of the municipal administrations’ with the support of NTEF and of the Bulgarian and Norwegian consultants. Based on the analyses, they will propose and justify the selection of an investment measure to be implemented with funding under this project, as well as make proposals for improving the local policies, national legislation and the programs of the specialized training institutions.
  • Following consultation meetings on the ground, design and implementation of the selected investment measures for climate change adaptation.
  • Publicity activities to familiarize the public, both with the good global practices and international experience, as well as with the practical implementation of the new approaches for adaptation in the practice of the eight partner municipalities.