Polish Briefing 7 June, 2017 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Polish Briefing: Government on oil and natural gas. Trump under fire

What goes in Poland on 7th of June.

Government on oil and natural gas

At the request of the Minister of Energy, Krzysztof Tchórzewski, the government will address a new bill on amending the Act on stocks of crude oil, petroleum products and natural gas and on procedures applicable in circumstances of a threat to the fuel security of the state and disruptions on the petroleum market, as well as some other acts.

The amendments will improve the competitiveness of the Polish oil sector by changing the responsibilities of the oil sector and public institutions regarding the functioning of the stock system. Additionally, it will contribute to eliminating black market fuel, and improving the country’s energy security.

Discussions on Nord Stream 2 in Szczecin

An information meeting on the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline will be held in mid June at the Zachodniopomorskie Voivodship Office in Szczecin. The meeting will be hosted by the Nord Stream 2 AG consortium, which is the investment applicant.

The company will present the investment’s technical description, scope of construction works, the process of environmental impact assessment in the cross-border context and results of the environmental impact assessment report.

At the end of February, the Marshall of the Zachodniopomorskie Voivodship, Olgierd Geblewicz asked Vice-Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski to coordinate, in line with Polish interests, the cross-border cooperation with Germany with regard to the planning of Nord Stream 2’s land line – the EUGAL gas pipeline. “We cannot exclude that the construction will have an impact on the environment in Poland,” says the Voivodship Office website.

EUGAL is the continuation of Nord Stream 2, and will run from the Baltic Sea as far as the German-Czech border in Saxony. Near the town Cedynia, a short section of the pipe is only 1 km away from the border with Poland.

Trump under fire

Trump’s decision to pull out the US from the climate agreement angered his partners. Europeans loudly opposed the president’s wish to renegotiate the deal.

The US President’s decision caused a wave of unprecedented, harsh criticism across the world. The UN General Secretary António Guterres, said Trump’s decision was a “huge disappointment”. Guterres‘s spokesman said on the Secretary’s behalf that “the Paris Agreement was adopted by all nations in the world in 2015 because they recognize the immense harm that climate change is already causing.” Guterres trusts that US cities, states and companies will continue their fight for development based on reduction of CO2 emissions, and thus create new jobs and markets to build sustainable future in the 21st century.

Nikki Haley, the United States Ambassador to the United Nations immediately reacted to the international public opinion’s outrage, by stressing that Trump’s decision was best for American interests. She said the Paris Climate Agreement was a “mistake”, which would hurt the US job market. This is why, she stressed, the negotiations on a new climate deal were the right thing to do. However, such negotiations are firmly rejected by European leaders, including Germany, France and Italy. Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni emphasized that they would continue to implement the historical accord. In a joint statement they expressed a deep conviction that the deal could not be renegotiated.

Sejm on the State Judicial Council

The Sejm, lower chamber of the Polish parliament, will address the State Judicial Council reform. This is the second reading of the document – the government’s proposition could have been accepted back in May. If everything goes according to plan, and the president will not veto the bill, or send it to the Constitutional Tribunal, the changes in the State Judicial Council will enter into force in June. This will also cause the current term of the State Judicial Council to end. The Sejm will also discuss the Law and Justice Party’s bill on the judiciary, which was adopted by the Sejm’s Justice Committee last Friday.