Last year, natural gas consumption in the Czech Republic fell by 19 percent. Overall, customers used over 81.5 terawatt hours of gas. The decline in year-on-year consumption was evident in every calendar month of 2022, according to the latest statistics from the Energy and Regulatory Office (ERO). According to experts, the reasons for gas savings are mainly due to the gradual increase in energy prices and warm weather.
Last year’s highest consumption was traditionally in the winter, specifically in January and December. The most significant year-on-year decrease occurred in May when consumption fell by about 32 percent compared to 2021. In contrast, energy experts recorded the lowest year-on-year difference in September, when consumption fell by about eight percent.
According to experts, one of the underlying reasons for the lower consumption was the gas price last year. “Its price rise has substantially increased the pressure for savings among households and companies. Household temperatures have been kept lower, and companies have either optimized or directly reduced gas-dependent production,” said XTB analyst Jiří Tyleček.
Another key factor contributing to the reduction in consumption is the above-average temperatures, particularly in recent winters.
“Although this has resulted in the price of gas falling on the exchange, such high prepayments and fixed prices for consumers remain. If the lower wholesale gas prices are sustained, most customers will not see this on their bills and invoices until a year from now. Therefore, gas consumption in the coming months will be significantly below average compared to the period before the energy crisis,” Tyleček predicts.
Electricity consumption statistics for last year have not yet been published. However, according to the interim results, this consumption has also fallen year-on-year, but significantly less than in the case of gas. According to estimates, it should probably be lower in units of percent.
Lower gas consumption has also translated into savings for the state. In the current heating season, the Czech Republic saved around 850 million cubic meters of gas compared to last year. It has thus met the EU’s target of reducing consumption by at least 15 percent this winter. Gas stocks are now double the previous year’s levels, helping to drive down energy prices on the market.