Between 2021 and 2030, the cost of energy generation will increase by 61 percent, if Poland actually follows the scenario of the government’s Energy Policy of Poland until 2040 (PEP2040). An alternative scenario developed by Instrat could reduce costs by 31-50 percent compared to PEP2040.
In December 2020, EU member states agreed to increase national targets for the share of RES in the economy and align them with the updated target of reducing emissions by 55 percent by 2030 (relative to 1990). Ahead of the “Fit for 55” negotiations, Poland appears to be setting itself on a collision course by proposing a RES target in PEP2040 – almost half the expected EU average.
New modeling by the Instrat Foundation shows that we can achieve an onshore wind capacity of 44 GW, offshore wind capacity of 31 GW, and for rooftop and ground-mounted PV it is about 79 GW, taking into account strict criteria for the location and rate of development of new plants. The report published today proves that it is possible to achieve over 70 percent share of RES in electricity production in 2030, while PEP2040 declares an unrealistic value of 32 percent.
Assuming the implementation of the RES development scenario proposed by Instrat, Poland would achieve a 65 percent reduction in CO2 emissions in 2030 in the power sector compared to 2015 – The potential of RES in our country is sufficient to achieve the EU 2030 climate targets and almost completely decarbonize the electricity mix by 2040. Unfortunately, this is what we see – in the form of blocking the development of onshore wind energy, destabilization of the law, sudden changes in support mechanisms. The national RES target should be significantly increased and the national law must support its achievement – comments Paweł Czyżak, co-author of the analysis.
The power structure proposed by Instrat allows for balancing the power system during the yearly peak load with no production from wind and solar and no cross-border connections available. However, in the PEP2040 scenario, this is only possible with timely implementation of the nuclear power program, which is already significantly delayed. – Successive shutdowns and failures of domestic power plants show that stability of electricity supply in Poland may soon no longer be a guarantee. In order to ensure national energy security, we have to bet on technologies that can be built immediately – e.g. windmills, photovoltaic installations, batteries – enumerates Paweł Czyżak.
Denying the role of RES in electricity production not only raises doubts about energy security, but will also lead to a threat to the competitiveness of the Polish economy and making us dependent on energy imports. So what should be done? – It is necessary, among other things, to unblock the development of onshore wind farms, implement offshore wind farms on time, postpone changes to the prosumer energy settlement system, create a system of incentives for the development of energy storage, adopt a hydrogen strategy, increase funding for grid modernization, and, most of all, to declare an ambitious RES target following the EU resolutions – concludes Adrianna Wrona.
- Patryk Berus, Communications Manager, email@example.com, +48 519 466 422
- Paweł Czyżak, Head of the Energy and Climate programme, firstname.lastname@example.org, +48 512 371 327
- Adrianna Wrona, Energy and Climate Analyst, email@example.com, +48 690 160 945
Czyżak, P., Sikorski, M., Wrona, A. (2021). What’s next after coal? RES potential in Poland. Instrat Policy Paper 06/2021.
The publication is the first in a series on the Polish energy transition. The complementary publications are:
- Achieving the goal. Coal phase-out in the Polish power sector.
- The missing element. Energy security considerations. (In progress)