The city of Dobrich in Bulgaria is planning to allow drivers of electric cars to park for free in special ‘blue’ zones in a move to reduce traffic emissions and encourage sustainable transport.

Dobrich, one of a few Bulgarian cities that have developed charging infrastucture for electric vehicles, is following guidance set out in Bulgaria’s National Action Plan(link is external) for the promotion and uptake of green vehicles for 2012-2014.

The document sets out the framework for the transition to a low-carbon and resource-efficient economy. Among the country’s aims is less reliance on fossil fuels and cutting environmental pollution, a significant portion of which comes from the transport sector.

A package of measures also sets out what cities can do to stimulate the growth of electric vehicles in their territories. The plan was developed with numerous stakeholders, including government ministries, the Bulgarian Association of Municipalities, cities, NGOs and businesses.

Included in the measures are tax incentives or other financial advantages which can be introduced to convince members of the public to switch to electric vehicles. The plan also highlights the need to increase the number of charging facilities to support the growing numbers of electric cars in Bulgaria – as of the end of 2013, there were 366 all-electric and 586 hybrid vehicles registered in the country

Original author: Lewis Macdonald