Energy transition in Poland | Edition 2019


Growing imports of gas, coal and electricity. Increasing importance of gas in the energy mix and stagnation in RES. Increase in greenhouse gas emissions. These are the most important conclusions from this year's edition of the report "Energy Transition in Poland" prepared by the Forum Energii. Full report in English will be available soon. 

From 2017 onwards, Forum Energii prepares an annual summary of energy and climate data.

The energy sector takes a sharp corner. We already know what we are leaving behind, but we do not know what is ahead of us - says Dr Joanna Maćkowiak-Pandera, President of Forum Energii. It is necessary to observe the main indicators of transformation - CO2 emissions, the share of coal, gas, RES, prices and energy imports. 

This year is a time of exceptional turbulence in the power industry. Compensations of power prices has introduced many additional risks for electricity sellers and consumers. Uncertainty about the future of energy, prices and strategy is growing. The Forum Energii report was created to support the debate on the course of the changes in the energy sector in Poland. Its aim is to increase the transparency of discussions. The level of energy security, the share of coal, gas, RES, the level of CO2 emissions and energy prices are the most important indicators to measure the level of energy transition. 

The increase in coal imports and CO2 emissions are worrying. The development of RES has been stopped. At the same time, the use of gas is rapidly increasing - a moderate increase in the use of gas is needed in Poland. The import of electricity is also growing, because its prices in Poland are high in comparison with the countries of the region - adds Maćkowiak Pandera. Unfortunately, the changes in the Polish energy sector do not result from any long-term strategy. The old model has run out - we need a courageous leader who will create a new vision of the power sector in Poland.  

Some of the changes that are taking place in the energy sector are particularly interesting, for example, the increase in coal imports, which is record high. Over 78% of the volume comes from Russia. Other main import directions are Colombia, USA and Kazakhstan. At the same time, the export of steam coal from Poland is the lowest in 15 years. As a result, the import balance has tripled and foreign suppliers already cover about a quarter of domestic demand. For decades we have learned to think of coal as a pillar of our country's energy security and trade balance. Meanwhile, we are becoming more and more dependent on supplies from Russia. 

Main conclusions

  • The share of imports in covering domestic energy needs is increasing. Record imports of electricity (two-and-a-half-fold increase), coal and gas were registered. 
  • Diversification of the mix is progressing towards greater use of gas units. 
  • In 2018, the capacity installed in RES remained stable. There is a lack of new investments.
  • In 2017, Poland's greenhouse gas emissions increased by 4 % compared to 2016. 
  • Emissions only in the energy and heating sectors in the last year remained unchanged.
  • The balance of steam coal imports tripled and covers about a quarter of domestic demand.
  • The share of gas in the energy mix is growing, last year it amounted to 7.2% compared to 5.6% in 2017.

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