The need for sustainable energy management at the municipal level is growing, in order to meet EU climate goals. Multiple initiatives have been launched to support municipalities in energy planning and strategy development process. Despite available support, research shows mixed results about implementation of plans and strategies. This research paper analyses what targets municipalities set, how they monitor implementation of their sustainable energy action plans (SEAPs) and searches for the most important factors that have enabled or hindered the implementation of local SEAPs at Latvia. The article shows that, in some cases, there is evidence that SEAP development is a project-based activity, supported by external experts. From municipal personnel point of view, it is a project that ends with approved SEAP, but not a part of their future daily routine. Eventually implementation of the plan is difficult, because municipalities lack experience in daily management of energy data, distribution of responsibilities and implementation of procedures. Municipalities also tend to exclude important stakeholders in their SEAPs, like, private sector, household sector and transport sector, which lead to lower targets and lower achievements in GHG reduction.