Municipality of Gabrovo

Gabrovo municipality is located in North-Central Bulgaria. The area of the municipality is 555,579 km2 and its population is 50 578 people, with the degree of urbanisation or the share of the urban population reaches 90%. The development of the town of Gabrovo, a regional centre and the largest city in the district, almost entirely dominates the development of the municipality and is of major importance for the development of the Gabrovo region. 

Gabrovo is among the strongest industrial districts in Bulgaria, with industry accounting for 45% of the region’s gross value added in 2019, compared to 25% on average in the country. The functioning of the Technical University in Gabrovo contributes to the appearance and formation of the city’s profile. 

Gabrovo Municipality is among the leading municipalities in the field of sustainable development and energy eficiency, and has been awarded the environmental award of the European Commission – “European Green Leaf”2021 and part of initiatives such as the Covenant of Mayors and NET ZERO CITIES. 


"A critical prerequisite for establishing an energy community, especially when there's limited prior experience and practice in the field, is the active participation of municipalities. Their involvement serves to bring stability, foster trust, and promote sustainability. 

In our pilot project, the cornerstone lies in the significant energy consumption by community members, primarily the Municipality itself, which serves as the primary consumer. Locally sourced energy production minimizes energy losses stemming from transmission. 

While energy communities hold the potential for achieving energy independence, it's imperative to diversify energy inputs and sources, encompassing solar, wind, and water, to attain a well-rounded energy balance. 

We firmly believe that the success of our community could serve as a blueprint for the energy transition, fostering socio-economic development in harmony with green objectives within our local community. In addition to the municipality itself, citizens, SMEs and NGOs will be attracted as its members, if possible from the region. Their participation in the energy community will be regulated, constituting between 0.5% and 20% of the value of the investment made. The energy community is expected to attract over 30 participants. This model is an integral part of the TANDEMS project, supported by the LIFE program. The SHAREs project also provides support through capacity building and knowledge exchange activities. Therefore, we are confident that it will soon evolve into a thriving, self-sustaining community."

- Todor Popov, Expert at Gabrovo Municipality and Founder of the Pilot Community


Location Municipality of Gabrovo, Bulgaria
Used energy generation technologies / implemented energy efficiency measures PV systems
Installed capacity 100 kWp are planned to be installed
Number of members Between 30 and 100 members including citizens, SMEs, and NGOs from the region
Regional scope Local
Activities in the energy community Implementation of the first energy community in Municipality of Gabrovo