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Polish Briefing 8 February, 2019 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Polish Briefing: Polish nuclear program is ambitious, but feasible

What goes on in Poland on the 8th of February.

By 2040, more or less half of Polish energy will come from coal

In an interview with BiznesAlert.pl, Government Plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure Piotr Naimski has commented on the energy strategy and the use of coal and nuclear power in Poland.

Among two documents: the energy strategy and the National Program for Energy and Climate are different, and the second one is greener. Piotr Naimski said that both documents will be discussed in the Ministry of Energy after a series of comments submitted in the consultations of the Polish Energy Policy until 2040: – There is agreement on the most important things. By 2040, we want to maintain a significant share of coal. It will be around 50 percent. You can of course discuss whether it will be 60 or 48 percent, but more or less half of the energy will come from coal. The second part should be zero-emission sources. This is a condition for maintaining the share of coal that we want to keep for economic and security reasons. This is our raw material. The nuclear energy source is the zero-emission source that Poland needs. The strategy put forward by Minister Krzysztof Tchórzewski assumes that by 2040 nuclear power plants with a minimum capacity of 6 GW will be created. In combination with planned offshore wind farms, this will reduce average CO2 emissions to a level that would allow modern coal-fired power plants to be maintained – said Naimski.

Asked about the import of coal from Russia, he said that this is a transitional solution: – The ongoing restructuring and investments in Silesia are supposed to balance the level of extraction with the demand for coal in Poland. In addition, coal is a raw material available from various sources – said Naimski to BiznesAlert.pl.

Nuclear program – ambitious, but feasible

Naimski remarked that the project of building a Polish nuclear power plant is a plan for twenty years: – By 2033, we want to achieve the first stage. This is rational. There are no fundamental protests in the discussions about the strategy project, but rather there are comments signaling concern about whether everything is feasible. This is an ambitious program, but it is the most feasible – he noted.

– The strategy appeared in December, and not earlier, as planned. It resulted from the necessity of conducting a government discussion on nuclear power. The method of financing a nuclear power plant is so real that the authors decided to publish an atom-based document. After all, no one wants to start a discussion about a project detached from reality. The method of financing taken into account in the energy sector is not separated from it. At this stage, it is neither necessary nor desirable to discuss details. This is a specific field with a certain number of partners that we can invite to implement this program. Public discussions on the involvement of partners would not have a good impact on the final decisions – said Naimski.