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   Jul 24, 2013
The Polish energy industry wants to invest in new production powers based on coal. Its representatives are arguing that it is not contrary to the EU climate policy. However, they are expecting support mechanisms that will make the investment profitable.

The energy market may be such a tool. The ways of decreasing the risk and ensuring the profitability of energy investments based on coal and gas was discussed by the heads of energy groups, experts and bankers. The participants in the debate pointed out that, while planning investments in energy, one should take into account the Polish mining industry as the supplier of fuel for new blocks.
‘The EU climate package does not say anything about closing down coal mines and resigning from coal power plants but about decarbonization as a reduction of carbon dioxide emission. In order to achieve our emission targets by 2020, we must send a signal to the EU that we are betting on CO2 reduction mechanisms,’ stated the President of the Polish Energy Group (PGE) Krzysztof Kilian. According to Kilian, this signal might be the replacement of depleted carbon blocks. The old ones were slightly above 30% efficiency, but the new ones, also carbon, are 45% efficient. Together with planned investments in the Polish energy sector totaling 4-6 thousand megawatts, Kilian thinks it would result in a nearly 30% reduction of CO2 emissions. ‘We have to be active and try to use the climate policy to our benefit. It’s not just about building 5-6 thousand of megawatts in energy, but to invite the coal sector into this mechanism. We are currently holding discussions about making our actions economically viable,’ noted Kilian. One such support mechanism could be the energy market where what is traded is not energy, but the readiness to ensure proper supply of energy at a given moment. The point is that the difference in energy usage during the day and at night is about 60-70%. However, because energy cannot be stored, it must be produced at all times. The energy market would mean that some of the costs would be reimbursed.
Another solution is, for example, to create a supporting mechanism with the use of industrial fees. According to the representatives of energy industry, a good solution is one that aids the profitability of the investment and ensures its stability.
Representatives of the banking sector are also in favor of creating a stable support system for the energy industry, which would facilitate the financing of specific projects. The bankers participating in the debate stressed that the issue today is not so much the financing of the energy sector as such, but the financing of specific projects that must be efficient in terms of business. For example, Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK) has made a declaration of approx. 1.5 million PLN reserved for projects of each Polish energy group.
‘There is nothing with a support mechanism if it helps achieve the primary aim. For example, the country’s energy security,’ Kilian concluded. In his opinion, the supporting mechanisms are necessary to make the program of obtaining 4-6 thousand megawatts of power profitable. According to Kilian, political will is indispensable in order to support much needed investments with suitable regulations.

Source: / ©
Photo: PGE Capital Group

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