Poland's Energy Policy 2040 in the spotlight


Probable delays of the nuclear energy project, insufficient attention to energy costs and the risk of non-compliance with EU climate and energy targets – these are some of the comments of Forum Energii on the draft Poland’s Energy Policy.

As part of the consultations announced by the Ministry of Energy, Forum Energii carried out a detailed analysis of the draft Poland’s Energy Policy until 2040 (PEP2040). We have also developed and analyzed an alternative scenario in order to broaden the scope of the discussion.

Aleksandra Gawlikowska-Fyk, Head of the Power Project, pays special attention to the issue of costs – The presented draft Energy Policy does not answer the following question: In what way does the Ministry of Energy intend to minimize the costs of modernizing the power industry and limit the increase in electricity prices?

Joanna Maćkowiak-Pandera, President of Forum Energii, sees the danger related to a possible delay of the nuclear energy project–The security of electricity supply in the 2030s is threatened, if nuclear power plants fail to come to reality, and lignite ends its operation.

Andrzej Rubczynski, Heating Strategy Director, says that the draft Energy Policy fails to cover the heating sector in an adequate manner. The heating sector is reduced to heating networks and systems, and this is only one third of the heat supply. Lack of a comprehensive overview, i.e. not taking into account individual heating and industrial heat, means that the improvement of air quality is not part of the Energy Policy. We do not consider the potential of energy efficiency either.

The most important remarks by Forum Energii on the Ministry of Energy proposal

  • There are many risks associated with the scenario proposed in PEP2040, which may threaten Poland’s energy security:
    • The risk of power shortages in the system after switching off lignite power plants and highly probable delay in the implementation of the nuclear energy project.
    • The risk of a large increase in wholesale electricity prices due to lack of cost optimization, which may result in deterioration of the competitiveness of the Polish economy in Europe.
    • The risk of excessively growing electricity imports to Poland due to significant price differences.
  • The document makes no reference to jointly agreed EU energy and climate goals, especially in the field of RES and improvement of energy efficiency. The analyses of Forum Energii indicate that more ambitious emission reductions are possible, even without nuclear power.
  • PEP2040 fails to take into account the upcoming changes on the EU energy market as introduced by, among other things, the so-called Winter Package (“Clean energy for all Europeans”) and network codes.
    • When it comes to the energy market, it is necessary to prioritize the improvement of the power system flexibility, which will improve the security of supply and will reduce the costs of the power system in the long term.
    • There is no reference to the strategy for building the internal energy market. The obligation to do so is stipulated in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. Unlocking the potential of existing interconnectors and their expansion can significantly reduce the costs of the Polish power system.
  • The 2040 perspective is too short for the state Energy Policy. The planning horizon in the European Union is 2050.
  • PEP2040 fails to address the issue of cost-effectiveness. Without providing any reason, it is proposed to withdraw from onshore wind, even though it is the cheapest source of renewable energy. At the same time, the project to build nuclear power plants is still maintained, despite the fact that it is a very expensive option of energy supply.
  • Electricity demand growth forecasts have not been justified in PEP2040 and fail to reflect the plans for electrification of the heating sector and transport.
  • PEP2040 fails to address the heating sector in an adequate manner, especially considering the scale of challenges related to the improvement of air quality.
  • Generally, PEP2040 overlooks trends related to new technologies, e.g. energy storage, a new role for consumers, growing importance of distributed energy.

Given the risks associated with the scenario proposed in PEP2040, we decided to present an alternative one. A part of our analysis was the modelling prepared by Enervis – an international consultancy company.

Related content

  • Polish Energy Policy until 2040 | First commentary of Forum Energii