Czech Republic may exclude PV from future renewables auctions

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The Czech Ministry of Trade is seeking views on its plans to restart large-scale renewable energy auctions in 2021.

The draft proposal excludes large-scale solar from the technologies eligible to take part, despite European Commission support for technology-neutral auctions. Wind, hydro and biomass projects will be eligible, according to the draft document.

Jan Krcmar, Chairman of the Czech Solar Association, told pv magazine the exclusion of solar is due to anti-PV sentiment in the Czech Republic in recent years.

“This is just a draft proposal and I hope there will be room for improving it and letting solar compete in future auctions,” he said. “We will, of course, advocate for auctions that would be accessible for all RES technologies. Based on the results of auctions in Germany and other geographically similar countries, we expect solar to be the cheapest option in the Czech Republic as well.”

Raise the rooftops

The government proposal includes rooftop solar arrays of up to 1 MW in size qualifying for an ad-hoc feed-in premium scheme, or green bonus, that may encourage take-up, with distributed generation in the Czech Republic registering only a few megawatts annually in the last four years.

The nation provides incentives for rooftop PV through a Green Savings Program, and to solar-plus-storage solutions through a dedicated scheme.

The last year of real growth was 2013, which saw around 55 MW of newly installed PV. Most of the country’s solar capacity comes from megawatt-sized PV plants installed between 2008 and 2013, with a generous FIT scheme closed in the latter year.

The Czech Republic reached a cumulative installed PV capacity of around 2.08 GW at the end of 2016.