International assessment of the project of “Comprehensive Refurbishment of the Prunéřov Power Plant 3x250 MW” will be conducted by the DNV consulting company

Yesterday, the Ministry of the Environment finalized the conditions for a contract with the Norwegian DNV company for international assessment of the project of “Comprehensive Refurbishment of the Prunéřov 3x250 MW Power Plant”.

“I chose a team of experts of the DNV company amongst a number of potential candidates on the basis of previous experience with this company in assessment of projects in the area of power production and climate change and also in relation to the ability of the company to prepare the study within a few weeks, so that the delay in issuing an opinion is shortened to the smallest possible period of time. The less established position of DNV in the Czech Republic, compared to other large international consulting companies, is another advantage. It was necessary that the maximum amount of expertise be acquired abroad.”, stated Minister of the Environment Jan Dusík when commenting on the parameters of this unusual step.

The requested study encompasses three main areas of assessment:

1. Assessment of the project in relation to the best available techniques (BAT), i.e. comparison with the overall and individual requirements according to the BREF documents (defining the best available techniques) for large combustion sources and for energy-production effectiveness.

2. Assessment of the EIA process, particularly in relation to its completeness, accuracy and transparency.

3. Calculation and evaluation of the difference in CO2 emissions in the proposed alternative and in the alternative that is fully compliant with BAT and assessment of any conditions for implementation of the project.

Detailed version of the technical terms of reference is given in the comments.

The cost of the contract for the international assessment, EUR 127,000 (without VAT), which is appropriate in relation to the dimensions of the project of refurbishment of Prunéřov, will be paid from the State Environmental Fund, i.e. from funds obtained from environmental polluters.

The form and cost of the contract are in accordance with the Act on Public Procurement, according to which a company may be selected for this type of assessment without holding a tender procedure.

On the basis of an agreement with the author of the report, neither the Ministry of the Environment nor the author will publish the specific names of the members of the expert team prior to completion of the report, in order to avoid potential speculations and influencing on the part of special-interest groups in relation to this team. The entire project will be managed directly by the central office of DNV with minimum participation by its Czech branch. All communication between the authors in relation to the developer of the project will take place through the Ministry of the Environment.

It is expected that the results of the study will be available by the middle of March, they will have the character of recommendations and the Ministry will take them into account in finalizing the concluding opinion on EIA.

The results of the study and further detailed information on the assessment itself will be presented by the Ministry of the Environment with participation by the authors, together with the EIA opinion on the project of “Comprehensive Refurbishment of the Prunéřov 3x250 MW Power Plant” at a press conference.


A/BREF Compliance Assessment

In line with the IPPC Directive (2008/1/EC), projects need to ensure that the Best Available Techniques (BAT) are employed. Typically, IPPC Reference Documents for Best Available Techniques (BREF) are used to verify compliance with this requirement. For the current project, two relevant BREF’s have been identified:

1. IPPC Reference Document on Best Available Techniques for Large Combustion Plants (version of July 2006;

2. IPPC Reference Document on Best Available Techniques for Energy Efficiency (version of February 2009;

During Part A, the proposed project will be compared on a point-by-point basis with all relevant requirements of the above two reference documents. For each relevant point, an opinion will be formulated. In case the proposed project is found not to be compliant to a relevant requirement of any of the above BREF documents, an analysis will be included. The latter will be aimed at evaluating local and other relevant technical and environmental conditions that could justify a deviation from the BREF requirement.

B/Environmental Impact Assessment Evaluation

During this part, the existing Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the proposed project (i.e. alternative C in §1.) will be evaluated. Special attention will be given to evaluate the relevance, the completeness, the reliability, the accuracy, and the transparency of the EIA.

C/Calculation of CO2 Impact

In this part of the opinion, the CO2 impact of the observed deviations from BREF (see Part A)will be assessed in comparison to full compliance with BREF. For each deviation, if relevant,a separate calculation of the difference in CO2 emission (of the proposed project versus full compliance with BREF) will be made. The total impact will also be assessed by combining the contribution of all individual deviations.