1. Primary Energy Efficiency Law

In the Czech Republic, Directive 2012/27/EU has not been transposed by a specific legislative measure, since the energy sector is already regulated by a coherent system of interlinked regulations. Instead, the Czech legislator has passed amendments to the following Czech laws:

-Act No. 406/2000 Coll., on energy management (amended as of 1 July 2015);

-Act No. 458/2000 Coll., energy act (amended as of 1 January 2016); and

-Act No. 165/2012 Coll., on supported sources of energy (amended as of 1 January 2016).

A major part of Directive 2012/27/EU has been transposed into Act No. 406/2000 Coll., on energy management, which aims to increase the energy efficiency of the Czech economy and sets out the rules for effective use of energy in the Czech Republic. This legal framework should help to reach the established national objective for an increase in energy efficiency.

Comparison

The transposition of Directive 2012/27/EU into the Czech legal system was delayed and exceeded the 5 June 2014 deadline set out in Directive 2012/27/EU. The transposition into Czech law was made only with effect from 1 July 2015.

Apart from this delay, Directive 2012/27/EU has been transposed in full.

The main programmes that have been implemented in the Czech Republic are the following:

National Energy Efficiency Action Plans

On the basis of the provisions set out in Directive 2012/27/EU, the Czech Republic was obliged to submit a first national energy efficiency action plan ("NEEAP") containing the national orientation goal to reduce energy consumption. In July 2007, the Czech Republic submitted a first NEEAP ("NEEAP I") and pledged to reduce its energy consumption by nine percent (9%) for the period 2008-2016, compared to the average consumption in the period 2002-2006. The pledged quantitative targets represent savings of 71.3 PJ (19.8 TWh) for the period 2008-2016.

In August 2011, the Czech Republic submitted a second NEEAP ("NEEAP II"). The calculation of the consumption of energy in the period 2002-2006 by NEEAP I was (according to NEEAP II) not entirely correct because the numbers contained therein were estimates. The target was therefore corrected to 73.1 PJ (20.3 TWh) which represents an increase against the NEEAP I estimate (of two point three five percent (2.35%)). Although the target was met in the first years, it was not possible to meet the target for the whole period 2008-2016. The final reduction in energy consumption amounted only to 66.8 PJ (18.6 TWh) and lagged behind the target by roughly eight point six percent (8.6%).

The third NEEAP was adopted in April 2014 ("NEEAP III"), following the approval of Directive 2012/27/EU. The calculation made by means of the top-down indicators recommended by the European Commission concluded that in 2010 the Czech Republic's savings amounted to 27.1 PJ (7.5 TWh). This compares to the result of the original calculation made in NEEAP II in the amount of 19.7 PJ (5.5 TWh). NEEAP III also sets the national orientation goal in accordance with Article 3 of Directive 2012/27/EU of reduction of final consumption in the amount of 47.9 PJ (13.3 TWh) in year 2020. This pledge is for the same amount as the obligatory energy savings stated in Article 7 of Directive 2012/27/EU.

The current, fourth amended NEEAP ("NEEAP IV") was prepared after the final approval of the programmes financed by the European Investment and Structural Funds. The cumulative energy savings target in final consumption under Article 7 of Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency was recalculated according to the Eurostat methodology and was set at 50.7 PJ (14.1 TWh). After the assessment of the current measures of the alternative scheme, additional policy measures in household, industry, the transport and agriculture sectors, and on the level of local governments were added. The Czech Government approved NEEAP IV on 16 March 2016 by Governmental Resolution No. 215/2016.

Sectoral Programmes

-National Programme for Support of Energy Efficiency and Use of Renewable Sources of Energy for 2017-2021

This programme was established by the Czech Ministry of Industry and Trade, with the intention to support the attainment of goals set out in the State Energy Policy.

It has a budget of at least CZK 750 million (approximately EUR 27.8 million) which will be used gradually through the whole period of 2017-2021.

The programme is divided into two sections:

-investment subsidies; and

-non-investment subsidies (e.g. analyses of the appropriateness of the energy performance contracting method, energy management, and education: advice centres, seminars, publications).

-Operational Programme Environment 2014-2020

This programme is aimed at the areas of:

-improvement of water quality and lowering of flood risks;

-improvement of air quality in residential areas;

-waste and resource management, ecological burdens and risk;

-protection of environment and countryside; and

-energy efficiency.

The programme is operated by the Czech Ministry of Environment and has a budget of almost EUR 2,637 billion.

-Other Programmes

Several other programmes are in place which address energy efficiency.

These are not specified here in more detail since either the total amount of the programme is marginal (e. g. the Joint Boiler Replacement Promotion Scheme) or they are focused on other areas and aim to achieve energy efficiency only as a secondary objective (e.g. the Programme of Development of the Countryside 2014-2020).

Comparison

Through NEEAP, the Czech Republic pledged to achieve the one point five percent (1.5%) annual energy savings target mandated by the EU Directive. It reduced the target in line with Articles 7 (2) a) and d) of Directive 2012/27/EU by the maximum allowed twenty five percent (25%).

In line with Article 7(9) of Directive 2012/27/EU, the Czech Republic chose an alternative scheme to comply with the energy savings requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU. That means the realisation of the reduction targets will be managed by public bodies or their delegated entities.

The criterion used to define those subjects that are obliged to undergo an energy audit is their total annual energy consumption.

The annual energy consumption thresholds are set out in Decree No. 480/2012 Coll., on energy audit and energy assessment, as amended, as follows:

-for natural and legal persons, the individual annual energy consumption threshold is 700 GJ (194 MWh) and the cumulative annual energy consumption threshold for all buildings and energy operations is 35,000 GJ (9,722 MWh); and

-for entities of the State, regional self-governing units and subsidised organisations, the individual annual energy consumption threshold is 700 GJ (194 MWh) and the cumulative annual energy consumption threshold for all buildings and energy operations is 1,500 GJ (417 MWh).

Every constructor or owner of a building or energy operation, who is not subject to the energy audit regulation due to being an entrepreneur other than an SME, is obliged to carry out an energy audit if:

-a building or energy operation exceeds an individual annual energy consumption threshold and if a cumulative annual energy consumption threshold for all buildings and energy operations of the subject is exceeded on average in the past two (2) years; or

-energy effectiveness criteria are not met after a major change of the building is carried out.

In addition, an entrepreneur which is not an SME is obliged to prepare an energy audit for an energy operation1 it uses or owns and to renew such audit every four (4) years.

An SME is defined in line with the Commission's recommendation2 as an entrepreneur which:

-employs fewer than 250 persons; and

-has an annual turnover not exceeding EUR 50 million, and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding EUR 43 million.

Only those entrepreneurs (other than SMEs) with established energy management systems or environmental management systems containing an energy audit are exempted from the energy audit obligation – provided that the management systems are certified by an authorised person in accordance with harmonised Czech standards.

National Energy Efficiency Action Plan

The current, fourth amended NEEAP IV was prepared by the Czech Government after the final approval of those programmes financed by the European Investment and Structural Funds. The cumulative energy savings target for final consumption under Article 7 of Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency was recalculated according to the Eurostat methodology and was set at 50.67 PJ (14.08 TWh). After an assessment of the current measures of the alternative scheme, additional policy measures in household, industry, transport and agriculture sectors and on the level of local governments were added. The Czech Government approved NEEAP IV on 16 March 2016 by Governmental Resolution No. 215/2016.

Comparison

The Czech legislation has been implemented to define the scope of energy audits and to ensure that all subjects comply with the Energy Efficiency Obligation. To comply with Article 7, the Czech Republic has opted to implement a set of other policy measures in accordance with Article 7 (9) of Directive 2012/27/EU.

Requirements on energy auditors – Act No. 406/2000 Coll., on energy management, as amended

The requirements placed on energy auditors are set out in Act No. 406/2000, on energy management, as amended.

A natural person may become an energy auditor if he/she:

-passes an exam organised by the Czech National Energy Inspectorate;

-has a required level of professional qualification, i.e. holds either:

-a university degree in technical sciences focused on the energy sector and has three (3) years of experience;

-a higher professional degree in technical sciences focused on the energy sector and has five (5) years of experience; or

-a high school degree in technical sciences focused on the energy sector and has six (6) years of experience.

-has full legal capacity; and

-has not been sentenced for an intentional crime in connection with his/her activity as an energy auditor.

If the applicant has completed his/her education in a different Member State, such education is recognised in the Czech Republic in accordance with the Czech Act No. 18/2004 Coll., on recognition of professional qualification, as amended.

Once an energy auditor licence is granted, it must be periodically renewed every three (3) years.

Requirements on energy audit and energy assessment – Decree No. 480/2012 Coll., on energy audit and energy assessment, as amended

This legislation includes the criteria for energy audits and energy assessments according to Directive 2012/27/EU.

Use of energy audits and energy assessments

The energy audits aim to increase energy efficiency of the buildings, and should eventually pay for themselves. In order to save costs, in certain cases energy assessments (a lighter version of energy audits) are permitted.

Apart from their primary use as a way to increase energy efficiency of a building or energy operation, energy audits and energy assessments may be used in certain subsidy programmes as a source of information for assessment of the application.

-A subsidy programme – energy management systems

A subsidy programme has been established for regional self-governing units (regions and municipalities) to promote the creation and improvement of energy management systems.

Every year, roughly CZK 1 million (approximately EUR 37,000) is used to support the creation and improvement of energy management systems.

Comparison

The Czech Republic has established legislation for certification of energy auditors, as well as guides for energy audit and a distinction between sizes of enterprises.

Energy auditors are required to demonstrate knowledge of Czech legislation and to be authorised by the Czech Republic. The Czech Republic has adopted minimum criteria for energy audits under Directive 2012/27/EU.

There are several strategies approved by the government that concern energy efficiency.

State Energy Policy 2015

On 18 May 2015, the Government of the Czech Republic approved an updated version of the State Energy Policy for the following twenty five (25) years. The main reason for the update of the State Energy Policy was a need for clearly formulated priorities and strategic objectives in the energy sector, which should give stability to investors, citizens and State authorities.

By approving the State Energy Policy, the Czech Republic acknowledged its intention to fulfil all of its responsibilities in terms of common European targets and policies and to ensure the stability of the investment environment in the energy sector and related sectors.

National Programme for Support of Energy Efficiency and Use of Renewable Sources of Energy for 2017-2021

This programme has been established by the Czech Ministry of Industry and Trade with an intention to support the attainment of goals set out in the State Energy Policy.

It has a budget of at least CZK 750 million (approximately EUR 27.8 million), which will be used gradually through the whole period of 2017-2021.

The programme is divided into two pillars:

-investment subsidies; and

-non-investment subsidies (e.g. analyses of the appropriateness of the energy performance contracting method, energy management, and education: advice centres, seminars, publications).

Operational Programme Environment 2014 – 2020

This programme is aimed at the areas of:

-improvement of water quality and lowering of flood risks;

-improvement of air quality in residential areas;

-waste and resource management, ecological burdens and risk;

-protection of environment and countryside; and

-energy efficiency.

The programme is operated by the Czech Ministry of Environment and has a budget of almost EUR 2.637 billion.

Other Programmes

Several other programmes are in place which are concerned with energy efficiency.

These are not specified here in more detail, since either the total amount of the programme is marginal (e.g. the Joint Boiler Replacement Promotion Scheme) or they are focused on other areas and concern energy efficiency only as a secondary objective (e.g. the Programme of Development of the Countryside 2014-2020).

National Action Plan of Energy Efficiency of the Czech Republic 2016

The plan was prepared and is updated every three (3) years in accordance with the requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU.

To comply with the requirements of Article 7 Directive 2012/27/EU, the Czech Republic has opted to implement other policy measures under Article 7 (9) of Directive 2012/27/EU. For implementation purposes, these measures are called an "alternative scheme" in the Czech Republic.

Of the other policy measures allowed under Article 7 (9) of Directive 2012/27/EU, the following measures were selected:

-financial engineering instruments;

-investment grants; and

-non-investment grants (analyses of the appropriateness of the energy performance contracting method, energy management, education: advice centres, seminars, publications).

The Czech Republic has decided that the alternative scheme will channel support into the following sectors:

-industry

-increase in the energy efficiency of technologies; and

-improvement in the energy performance of buildings.

-services

-improvement in the energy performance of buildings;

-increase in the energy efficiency of technologies; and

-savings in outdoor lighting.

-households

-improvement in the energy performance of buildings.

Comparison

The Czech Republic addressed the requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU in the area of renewable energy sources and reduction of consumption of energy through appropriate adjustments in the national legislation, in order for it to correspond to the needs of Directive 2012/27/EU.

Act No. 165/2012 Coll., on the supported sources of energy, as amended

The law has been amended to address the requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU, the most noticeable change being the transfer of the control competence from the State Energy Inspectorate to the Energy Regulatory Office.

Act No. 406/2000 Coll., on the energy management, as amended

The law has been amended to address the requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU, most importantly of Article 7 of Directive 2012/27/EU, and parts of Directive 2006/32/EC.

Act No. 458/2000 Coll., the Energy Act, as amended

This act represents the most important piece of Czech legislation concerning the energy sector and it has been amended to address the requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU.

Comparison

Directive 2012/27/EU establishes an indicative target of at least twenty percent (20%) energy efficiency for Member States. In line with Article 7 (9) of Directive 2012/27/EU, the Czech Republic chose an alternative scheme to comply with the energy savings requirements of Directive 2012/27/EU. That means the realisation of the target will be managed by public bodies or their delegated entities.

2. Specific Provisions of the Law

3. Obligations

1An energy operation is defined as “a complex of operations, installations and buildings used for energy management and consumption”.

2Commission recommendation of 6 May 2003 concerning the definition of micro, small and medium- sized enterprises (2003/361/EC).

4. Mandatory Audit of Large Industry

5. Strategies

6. Targets

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