The kindergarten Elhitsa is located in Chepelare, on the slopes of Rhodope Mountain (BG). It is a three-storey, massive brick building. Before 2007, the heating in the kindergarten was supplied by a heavy, oil-fueled boiler. As such, the high energy cost was an economic strain for the municipality’s budget. For this reason, the kindergarten’s management sought solutions to improve the energy efficiency and to cut energy costs, leading the kindergarten to opt for a biomass boiler in 2008 which brought economic, social and environmental advantages to the municipality.

The cost for heating with pellets the past eight years was 156.390 BGN (79.955 €) when compared to the 33.676,20 BGN (17.217 €) that was spent in 2007 alone. The social benefits for substituting the heavy oil-fueled boiler with a biomass boiler were also significant: the heating provided comfort and health to the children through using biomass as a renewable energy source. The switch also allowed for interesting environmental advantages through the reduction of CO2 emissions that resulted by using a high efficient technology based on ecological biomass combustion. Calculations showed that the annual greenhouse gas savings after the implementation of the bioheat project was 90,9%.

Highlights to be taken from the implementation of the bioheat project in kindergarten Elhitsa show that municipality buildings have significant potential for successful energy efficiency projects. Also, public procurement is proven as economic and ecological while bringing benefits to municipalities.

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