William Malcolm

CEZ Requests Temporary Emission Exemptions

CEZ Power Group will request temporary exemptions from emission limits for some of its power and heating plants.

New European rules requiring the best available technology (BAT) will come into effect next year, which will add requirements for the operation of the plants. The standards apply to emissions of nitrogen, particulate matter, sulfur, carbon monoxide, or mercury. In the short term, CEZ will also ask for an exemption for the Tusimice power plant for nitrogen and sulfur emissions for the Trmice power plant and for the nitrogen limits for boilers at Melnik 2 and 3.

The problem, CEZ says, is that there is no single solution for all power plants. In recent years, CEZ has launched, with the help of universities and other research institutions, an extensive program of research and development of the most effective techniques to reduce mercury emissions.

CEZ said that the current wave of power plant modernization and greening is a continuation of previous ones in which the company has invested over CZK 200 billion since 1989.

In recent months, authorities have been reviewing an exemption from future European limits for mercury and nitrogen oxides emissions for the Chvaletice power plant of financier Pavel Tykač. The company requested that the plant be allowed to discharge 303 kilograms of mercury and 337 tonnes of nitrogen oxides annually above the limit that will come into effect in Europe from August 2021. The plant said further investment of CZK 1.4 billion would be required to reach the newly needed limits.

The Pardubice region complied with the power plant’s application last summer with restrictive conditions. However, the Ministry of the Environment annulled the decision of the Office. Due to the objections of environmental organizations, including Greenpeace, local associations, and some surrounding municipalities, the decision was handed over to the Regional Authority in Olomouc.