Feedback report
Renewable Energy: Powering the Future

Study Tour for Energy Professionals - World Order and Globalization Hub

Kostantsa Rangelova, Senior Analyst at the Center for the Study of Democracy, reports on her remarkable journey focused on renewable energy solutions to the United States. She has been a participant in the study tour, organized by the World Order and Globalization Hub of FNF.

As a participant in the study tour organized by the World Order and Globalization Hub of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, I had the privilege of experiencing an incredible journey focused on renewable energy solutions. I applied for the Study Tour with the main motivation to deepen my knowledge of renewable energy, climate security, and energy system fields and to create professional connections with experts in these fields from different countries and backgrounds. The meetings, discussions, and site visits with renowned individuals and organizations driving renewable energy initiatives in the US made this a deeply fulfilling experience that will have lasting impact on my professional life. The main highlights from the Study Tour include:

Meaningful Dialogue and Best Practice Exchange

One of the most rewarding aspects of the Study Tour was the opportunity to engage in dialogue and learn from participants representing various countries. Sharing our insights on the current state of renewable energy in our respective nations allowed us to identify common challenges and discover practical solutions. The exchange of best practices highlighted the effectiveness of certain strategies, which I believe can be applicable not only in Europe but also in my home country, Bulgaria. Of particular interest for me was the exchange on offshore wind development, as this is an emerging topic for Bulgaria, as the national regulatory framework for deploying this renewable energy technology on the national level is still missing. In that regard, the discussion about the role of Community Benefit Agreements and the different approaches to dealing with local communities and potential push-back was very insightful.



Engagement with Experts and Decision Makers

Throughout the program, we had the privilege of meeting experts and decision makers actively involved in the renewable energy sector. These interactions provided invaluable insights into policy development, regulatory frameworks, and the future of sustainable energy. Conversations with representatives from George Washington University, House and Senate committees, American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE), and Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) expanded my understanding of the complex landscape of renewable energy.

Captivating site visits

The study tour included captivating site visits that showcased innovative approaches to sustainable energy. In particular, the visit to Stelle Group self-powered buildings left a lasting impression. Witnessing first-hand the integration of renewable energy technologies highlighted the immense critical role of first-movers as a driving force for the transition.


Transatlantic Cooperation and Policy Recommendations

The study tour emphasized the significance of transatlantic cooperation in tackling global energy and geopolitical challenges. The discussions highlighted the importance of collaboration in overcoming protectionist policies and advancing the transition to renewable energy. I was particularly impressed by the emphasis placed on developing policy recommendations based on the insights gained during the program. This approach ensures that our experiences and ideas contribute to tangible outcomes and drive meaningful change.

Overall, I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to be part of this Study Tour. The dedication and expertise of the organizers and the diverse perspectives shared by fellow participants have left a lasting impact on me. I look forward to applying the lessons learned and collaborating with the international network of experts established during this program to create a sustainable and renewable future.

Author:  Kostantsa Rangelova

Senior Analyst, Energy and Climate Program, Center for the Study of Democracy