In the week before the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27), the National Trust EcoFund conducted training for experts from the municipal administrations across the country. The topic is relevant to all – how municipalities can be proactive in addressing the climate change related risks in urban areas.
The aim of the training was to prepare the experts from the municipalities in Bulgaria for planning and implementing climate change adaptation measures in urban areas for which funding is provided under different programs in the next programming period.
The training is held within the framework of the project “Implementation of innovative measures for climate change mitigation and adaptation in the municipalities in Bulgaria”, funded by the EEA FM Environment Protection and Climate Change Program. The project is being piloted in the major cities of eight municipalities. The experts from their administrations had already passed through the steps and processes, which were presented during the training. Representatives of these municipalities participated in the training and shared their experience.
The main threats for the urbanized territories – floods, landslides, water scarcity, “heat island effect” are identified in the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy. This training will equip the Bulgarian municipal administrations with knowledge and skills to plan and implement adaptation measures for preventing the risk of these threats.
The Norwegian project partners – the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS) and the Western Norway Research Institute (WNRI) have made an important contributions to the training, producing and presenting an in-depth and comprehensive study of international experience related to measures that help municipalities reduce the risk of these threats to protect their population, infrastructure and, last but not least, the nature against the threats of the climate change.
In addition to the familiarization with the international experience, the core of the training was the presentation and the exercises on the application of a Methodology for analyzing existing strategic documents in the municipalities and identifying pilot activities. It was led by the team of the Analytical Consultative Group, which is the NTEF consultant under the project.
The training was attended by 73 participants from 44 municipalities across Bulgaria. All participants expressed a high degree of satisfaction with the training and an appreciation of its benefits for their future work. Most of the participants noted that they would be able to use what they had learned in their direct work.
The participants have proposed to create their own group in the social networks to continue their communication and discussions on the issues, which are important for them under the abovementioned topic.