IEA praises Czech Republic energy infrastructure

The Czech Republic has the highest level of electricity interconnection capacity within Central Europe, according to the International Energy Agency.

The IEA has praised the Czech Republic for supporting the development of robust natural gas and electricity infrastructure in its latest review of Czech energy policies.

IEA executive director Fatih Birol said that the Czech Republic’s energy policies have been strengthened by the adoption in 2015 of a State Energy Policy and complementary climate policies.

“These measures represent a solid starting point, but the government needs to set out transparent implementation plans to support these policies and establish clear expectations for future investors,” said the IEA.

Speaking in Prague, Dr Birol noted that “potential investors need clarity and certainty from policymakers. The government must create the conditions to attract necessary investments across the energy sector.”

Dr Birol pointed to measures introduced in 2014 to reduce support for renewables that have created uncertainty, and had negative implications for investor confidence. As one of the major pillars of the State Energy Policy, the country is also expanding its nuclear energy capacity in order to strengthen energy independence and security of supply.

The review highlights the need to decide on the mechanisms for financing the construction and operation of these new nuclear power plants as soon as possible.

The review also notes that coal combustion remains the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions and local air pollution in the Czech Republic and highlighted the benefits of retrofitting existing coal-fired power plants with cost-effective emissions controls, and replacement of ageing plants with high-efficiency technology.

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