Polish Briefing 19 January, 2022 11:00 am   

Polish Briefing: Polish-Czech meeting on Turów with no results | EIB to grant a loan for the construction of six wind farms in Poland


What goes on in Poland on the 19th of January.

The meeting of the ministers of the environment of Poland and Czechia on the Turów Mine brought no results

Czech Minister of Environment Anna Hubáčková met today with Anna Moskwa, the Polish Minister of Climate and Environment. The talks concerned the dispute over the lignite mine in Turów. Both parties issued a joint statement in which they promised to take further steps to resolve the dispute.

In 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union decided to impose on Poland a fine of EUR 500,000 a day for keeping the Turów Mine in operation. This was done to secure the dispute over the correctness of a new license for the mine until 2044, which was challenged by the Czechs in the Court. The CJEU decided that for the purposes of securing the court proceedings, coal mining in Turów should be stopped, which would result in breaking the fuel supply to the Turów Power Plant, which at peak times provides up to seven percent of Poland’s energy demand.

Today, Poland and the Czech Republic have resumed talks about the dispute over the Turów Mine, which were suspended at the end of 2021. Meanwhile, the Poles suggested that the Czechs were extracting coal in the CSM mine, which is located on the border, without an environmental approval. It is alleged that the plant has a detrimental effect on the communes in the Polish Cieszyn poviat. Poland wants to prove that the Czechs did not comply with international law when issuing coal mining permits, and did not take into account the opinions of the neighboring country regarding the harmful impact of mining on the regions near the border. The Minister of the Environment of the Czech Republic Anna Hubáčková and Minister Anna Moskwa met in Warsaw. During the talks, Hubáčková tweeted that in her opinion signing the agreement was the best solution.

The talks resulted in a joint statement in which the parties announced that the talks will be continued. “We have just completed five hours of fruitful conversations. We made final arrangements. There are certain points on which we will continue to consult each other,” said Minister Anna Moskwa. “The talks were open, we discussed individual points. We have agreed that there will be no minutes and we consider the content of the meeting confidential. There are still issues that we want to talk about and we will not reveal details,” she added. Minister Anna Hubáčková said that she needed to consult some points of the talks in the Czech Republic. “I hope that after that we will be able to close this dispute. We promise that we will inform about the progress as soon as possible,” she emphasized. The Czech Minister added off the mic that talks could be continued by phone on Wednesday after consultations with the government.

The EIB will grant a loan for the construction of six wind farms in Poland

The European Investment Bank has signed a Green Loan for c. 66 MEUR (c. 304 MPLN) with six special purpose vehicles owned by EDP Renewables (EDPR) to support the construction and operation of six medium-sized onshore wind farms with a total nominal capacity of 150 MW in Poland.

The six onshore wind farms financed by EIB are geographically located mainly throughout the north (Kozlowo, Krasin, Lichnowy, Chojnice and Piatkowo wind farms) and the south (Bogoria wind farm) of the country.

The onshore wind farms have been awarded individual 15-year two-sided contract-for-differences (CfD) under competitive auctions held in 2018 and 2019. The CfD scheme is Poland’s main mechanism for supporting low-carbon electricity generation. Their implementation presents a strong case for an EIB financing in line with the Climate Action objectives of the Bank. The project is also the first in Poland to benefit from an EIB Green Loan, the features of which are fully in line with the requirements set out in its climate awareness bonds programme.

The EIB investment will cover close to 50% of total senior debt – the remaining debt amount being provided jointly by Banco Santander and Caixabank Poland, partly backed by an ECA guarantee provided by EKF.

EIB Vice-President, Prof. Teresa Czerwinska, said: “Energy transformation is one of the major tasks for the future. The European Investment Bank, being EU Climate Bank, is delighted to co-finance EDPR’s wind farms’ project. We strongly believe that by investing in the diversification of the energy sector in Poland, we support the Climate Action and improve the quality of life of the society.