Czech Republic - Energy and power
In 2000, net electricity generation was 69.4 billion kWh, of which 77.8% came from fossil fuels, 2.5 % from hydropower, 18.6% from nuclear energy, and the remainder from other sources. In the same year, consumption of electricity totaled 54.7 billion kWh. Total installed capacity at the beginning of 2001 was 69.6 million kW.
The Czech Republic has an operational nuclear power plant with four 440 MW reactors at Dukovany, and a second, with twin 1,000 MW reactors, at Temelin, near the Austrian border. Its original completion date was 1999, but the controversial project was delayed repeatedly. The first reactor became operational in December 2000 but has been shut down repeatedly due to technical problems. When both units are fully operational (a point that was expected to be reached at the end of April 2003), they will provide 20% of the country's power needs. Uranium for domestic nuclear power comes from Pribram, North and South Bohemia, and South Moravia. Nuclear power is an important part of the Czech Republic's energy strategy because the country is trying to reduce pollution from dirty brown coal power plants, especially in southern Bohemia.
The Czech Republic's crude oil reserves are limited, totaling 15 million barrels as of January 2003. The country imports oil from both Russia and Germany through the Mero pipeline and from Russia via the Druzhba pipeline. Oil consumption in 2001 was 172,000 barrels per day.
Since its separation from Slovakia at the beginning of 1993, the Czech Republic has made progress in diversifying energy supplies, privatizing state-owned energy companies, and reducing pollution while maintaining economic growth. In the late 1990s, privatization was carried out with an eye to European Union (EU) membership by 2003. Regional electricity companies are being privatized, while the high voltage network of 100 kilowatts and higher will remain a state entity.
The share of the nation's energy needs met by domestic coal declined from 55% in the early 1990s to 44% by the end of the decade. In the Czech Republic, lignite is mined at Brno, Kladno, Most, Plzen, Sokolov, and Trutnov; bituminous coal comes from underground mines at the East Bohemia, West Bohemia, Kladno, and Ostrava-Karviná coal fields. Coal mining declined in the 1990s, and was forecast to be cut in half by 2020.