Slovakia’s climate plans call for decarbonising buildings, shifting to clean technologies and reducing energy consumption. Fossil fuels currently provide 45% of heat and hot water in buildings, with biofuels and district heating — also fossil-fuel based — making significant additional contributions. Slovakia expects the amount of thermal energy provided by heat pumps to nearly double by 2030. An impressive achievement that would, nonetheless, meet only 9% of the country’s building heat needs.

Author Duncan Gibb analysed the national policies, regulations and practices that impact heat pump uptake in Slovakia. To increase heat pump installation, we recommend that policymakers:

  • Improve the economic viability of heat pumps for homeowners. Rebalancing taxes and levies on electricity and gas is essential for achieving this goal.
  • Provide consistent and meaningful subsidies, including targeted provisions for low-income households, to enable broader segments of the population to acquire heat pumps.
  • Consider more ambitious regulation to increase the uptake of clean technologies, such as appliance installation restrictions or clean heat standards.

With the right support, heat pumps could play a significant role in achieving Slovakia’s goals for building decarbonisation, increased use of renewables and energy efficiency.