Project details
1013 · Hydropower
  • Katuntsi, Bulgaria
Sustainable hydropower for more clean electricity in Bulgaria

VEC Energy Ltd. operates a small hydroelectric power plant with a capacity of 3.4 MW in proximity of the village Katuntsi in Southwestern Bulgaria, at the foot of the Pirin Mountains. The region is one of Bulgaria’s richest in both forest and water resources. The aim of the project is to feed 12-14 GWh into the Bulgarian energy grid. This way, 84,131 tons of CO2 will be saved within a period of seven years. The power plant utilizes water of the existing Spanchevo irrigation canal. Additionally, a water reservoir of 3000m³ is available, so that even at times of high irrigation demand energy can be produced consistently and efficiently.

The generated power contributes to the expansion of the Bulgarian energy mix, which consists to date mainly of fossil fuel combustion and nuclear power. Due to its location apart from nature reserves and its use of existing infrastructure, the environmental impact by the project is minimal, nearby agricultural lands will not be affected.

How hydropower contributes to climate action

Hydropower plants use the energy of water to generate electricity. The energy is harnessed by passing water through a turbine. Under the pressure of the water, the turbine turns and transfers this energy to a generator, which converts kinetic energy into electricity. This principle applies to all types of hydroelectric power plants: from small run-of-river power plants to pumped-storage power plants on bodies of water like lakes.

In many parts of the world, electricity is still primarily generated from fossil fuels. Clean hydropower can replace some of this emission-intensive energy and thus verifiably save carbon emissions. In most hydropower projects, the electricity is fed into a regional power grid, diversifying the energy supply and improving energy security in areas affected by power shortages and blackouts. Often, these projects also create jobs for the local population. Hydropower projects thus make an important contribution to clean energy supply as well as contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Contribution to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Affordable and Clean EnergyUsing the hydroelectric potential in Bulgaria to meet the growing demand and improve supply security in the energy sector.
Decent Work and Economic GrowthCreating local jobs in the underdeveloped Southwest of Bulgaria by the construction and operation of the power plant, Economic development of the region by foreign investment
Responsible Consumption and ProductionSupporting a sustainability oriented economy through reduced use of fossil fuels
Climate ActionThe project saves an average of 12,010 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.
Project standardVerified Carbon Standard (VCS)TechnologyHydropowerRegionKatuntsi, BulgariaEstimated annual emission reductions12,018 t CO2Verified byRINA Services S.p.A. (RINA)