Ecological improvements to local heating sources

The Moravian-Silesian Region (MSR) has suffered from poor air quality for many years; one measure implemented to improve the situation has been a scheme financing the replacement of obsolete household boilers (or boilers no longer meeting emissions standards) with modern low-emission boilers. This programme has been co-funded by subsidies from EU structural funds (EUSF), the MSR and the City. Solid fuel boilers have been replaced by more modern systems (including gas boilers and heat pumps). In 2012–2015, a total of 266 boilers were replaced via this programme. In December 2015 a new call for applications was announced in the MSR; a total of 359 boilers have so far been replaced in Ostrava households as part of this call. This figure is not yet final, as the current call remains open until June 2018 (422 applications have been received to date). A total of 625 boilers have thus been replaced so far as part of all completed calls and the current call; this number may well increase in the future.

Thanks to this support from the City of Ostrava, households are able to replace boilers almost free of charge; this makes the programme very attractive to citizens. The City’s contribution, combined with the EUSF and MSR funding, means that the programme is accessible to people on low incomes, who would not otherwise be able to afford it (the subsidy programme stipulates that applicants must cover 15% of the costs, which is not a viable option for some households in Ostrava). Citizens were informed of the programme (and the City’s contribution) via leaflets, advertising on public transport, targeted communication, meetings in affected areas, etc.

Information also here.

This large-scale boiler replacement programme has not only helped to reduce emissions of pollutants into the atmosphere from household heating sources; it has also reduced energy consumption (the modern boilers are more efficient) and thus also CO2 emissions. Existing solid fuel boilers are being replaced by more modern systems (including gas boilers and heat pumps). Solar thermal systems can also be installed as part of the replacement.

The replacement of the first 226 boilers in Ostrava households brought savings of approx. 21 000 GJ/year and reduction of CO2 emissions by 794 t/year. Including the 359 boilers replaced as part of the following call, total savings were 58 000 GJ/year and reductions in CO2 emissions were 2195 t/year.


The next phase of the household boiler replacement programme

Applications for the replacement of obsolete household boilers can still be submitted (until 30 June 2018). A total of 422 applications have been received as part of this call, and just under 360 boilers have been replaced so far (see Past Performance). The next call in the programme was announced in June 2017, and applications were accepted from September 2017; so far, 428 applications have already been received as part of this call, and more applications may still be submitted, as the call remains open until 31 December 2018. Based on the number of boilers replaced as part of previous calls (625) and the number of applications from the latest call (428), the total number is 1053; this is the number of boilers that are currently set to be replaced by 31 December 2019 (when the latest call ends). However, this figure may yet rise in the future, as the calls are still open. Out of the total number of solid fuel boilers in detached houses in Ostrava (2429), at least 1053 boilers will thus be replaced by 31 December 2019. The success rate will therefore be at least 43% (based on data valid as of 15 September 2017). If the expected 428 boilers are replaced, this will bring an additional approx. 40 000 GJ/year in energy savings and CO2 reductions of 1503 t/year besides the savings/reductions achieved in the previous period.