- In 2021, Czech Republic installed 62 MW of new solar PV capacity, according to local solar association Solární asociace
- Major capacity was installed by the residential segment, backed by government aid
- Interest is increasing among homeowners for solar and storage hybrid systems
- C&I segment is facing lengthy implementation and bureaucratic issues hence the installations last year represented only 19.2 MW
- The association is optimistic about ground mounted solar picking up pace in 2022, as government also introduces measures for C&I
Czech Republic’s local solar association Solární asociace counts the country to have installed 62 MW of new solar power capacity in 2021, representing an annual growth of 20.6%, with 9,321 systems connected.
Despite the country installing 3,028 systems more than in 2020, the total annual capacity was only slightly higher at 62 MW, up from 51.4 MW in 2020. The association explains this is due to the fact that the average size of new systems was 6.7 kW, having gone down from 8.3 kW in the year before.
A strong and growing market for rooftop solar thanks mainly to soaring electricity prices, Czech Republic awarded subsidies to around 6,500 residential rooftop solar applications under its New Green Savings Program in 2021, out of which 80% were for a hybrid system comprising battery storage. This compares to subsidies for 4,846 applications in 2020 with 78.8% opting for solar and storage hybrid systems.
Had it not been for the long-term anti-solar campaign, several tens of thousands of households and companies today could have already been prepared for the major increase in energy prices with their own rooftop solar power plant, opined the association’s Executive Director Jan Krčmář, and added, “We are now in a situation where the design and installation companies are not able to satisfy the demand.”
Even as residential solar installations were robust last year, the commercial and industrial (C&I) segment witnessed a decline of 70% in terms of projects. Less than 400 systems were installed with a combined capacity of 19.2 MW. According to the association, the interest isn’t as much in this segment due to ‘complex administration associated with construction and lengthy implementation of projects’.
Going forward, in 2022 the association expects the country’s initial ground mounted solar power plants, backed by the Modernization Fund, to come online. There will be a renewed focus on C&I solar under a new program under the National Recovery Plan. Yet, it fears the current global scenario of high component prices and freight charges along with tight supply of raw materials will increase the waiting time for residential solar.
Czech Republic targets to increase the share of renewables in its energy mix to 29% by 2030. In September 2021, the country’s Parliament approved a law to aid renewable energy projects along with competitive auctions for the same (see Czech Republic Clears RE Aid Law).