Energy decisions made in 2020 despite crisis - associations

The year 2020 was in may aspects difficult for the Czech energy sector and it brought several decisions and major challenges for the coming years despite the coronavirus crisis, according to a CTK poll of energy associations.

They mentioned the coal exit plan for 2038 and tougher European climate goals. Another crucial topic was preparation for the tender for nuclear power plant Dukovany's new unit. The energy industry, like other industries, faced an unprecedented challenge of the coronavirus spread and its impacts on the economy, however, it was handled with honour on all levels, which is one of the most positive aspects, Chamber of Commerce energy section secretary Lenka Janakova said. The Chamber of Commerce appreciates that the government's Coal Commission made its recommendation on coal exit, which would be hard to imagine only a few years ago, that gives the sector the needed perspective and direction, Janakova said.

Chamber of Renewable Energy Sources chairman Stepan Chalupa considers the way the EU reacted to the coronavirus-induced economic drop the biggest event of 2020. It is very positive and progressive there was an agreement that dealing with the climate crisis is also the best way to economic recovery, and with that the fast inflow of money for clean technologies, Chalupa said. Czech Gas Association board chairman Martin Slaby pointed out the new cooperation with the Association for District Heating helping heating companies switch to natural gas.

The Confederation of Industry appreciated that the government approved conditions for indirect costs compensations for energy-intensive segments exposed to carbon leakage, which has been in use in neighbouring countries, economy policy section head Bohuslav Cizek said. The relevant funding, however, has not been established, he added. Laws on energy and subsidised energy sources, both long waiting to be discussed by the Chamber of Deputies, are crucial for the industry, Cizek said.

This year confirmed households' increasing interest in photovoltaics which rose at a double-digit rate, with companies joining in as well using aid from operational programmes, Modern Energy Union programme head Martin Sedlak said. Interest in clean mobility increased, too. The number of new electric car registrations grew by more than 2,000 and there are tens of new charging stations, Sedlak said, adding that electric mobility will keep growing in the coming years.

Source: ČTK

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