Energy Environment 4 August, 2017 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Maśnicki: Emissions limits may cost the energy sector even PLN 17 billion

The new BAT conclusions may increase energy bills. The representatives of the sector admit that the increase cannot be avoided. “We are on the commercial market and it is in our interest as producers to make sure the costs are as low as possible,” Jędrzej Maśnicki from the Polish Electricity Association (PKEE) said in the RZECZoBIZNESIE program. 

“We have been expecting the adoption of BAT conclusions for many months now, so this is not a surprise to us,” he said. BAT, Best Available Techniques, is an EU document that determines the limit of pollution emitted by the biggest combustion entities.

“At the moment this is published in the EU’s journal of laws, a four-year period will start during which we will have to get new permits or change the existing ones. Our installations can function thanks to them. Within the four years we need to carry out the entire investment process, which will mean the adherence to emissions norms”, he said.

Maśnicki estimated the costs of adapting installations to the environmental norms would be between PLN 9 and 17 m.

“The difference stems from the fact that BAT are constructed in such a way, which points to lower and upper emissions norms. Depending on the norms, which the marshal of the voivodeship chooses, the costs may be either higher or lower. In case of the upper ones, they will be around PLN 9 bn and in case of the lower ones PLN 17 bcm,” the PKEE representative said.

In his opinion the scale of investment and operational costs will impact electricity bills for energy consumers.

“However, we need to remember that we are functioning on a competitive market and it is in our interest, as producers, to lower the costs as much as possible. According to our estimates it will be over ten zloty per 1 MWh produced when it comes to electricity,” he said.

Some energy blocks will be able to function for some time despite the fact there is no possibility of modernizing them. “Those blocks, which do not fulfill the BAT norms and are critical from the point of view of the Polish energy security used a derogation and will use it until the end of this decade, unless a different decision on their functioning is be made. If this happens they will need to fulfill those norms.”

The current heat wave has become a significant challenge to the energy sector. High temperatures cause a sharp increase in energy demand, which may cause stoppages. “We are approaching this problem cautiously; the energy sector will definitely adjust the size of power supply to the changing consumption on the market,” Maśnccki said.