The increase in wind capacity, both onshore and offshore, will become a driver for the Polish economy. The first effects in the form of additional tax revenues and developing labour market will be already visible later this year thanks to auctions for onshore wind farms. In the next decade the investment boom will shift to offshore.
The 9-10 September study tour organized by the Polish Wind Energy Association under the honorary patronage of the Ministry of Energy, visiting PGE Renewables’ power plants (Lotnisko wind farm and Żarnowiec pumped storage power plant) and TFKable Group’s manufacturing facility in Bydgoszcz, is aimed at demonstrating the benefits of dynamic development of wind industry in Poland.
Photos from Lotnisko Wind Farm
Participants of the tour include the Deputy Minister of Energy responsible for renewables, Mr Krzysztof Kubów, representatives of the media and public administration.
– The Ministry of Energy has recently introduced numerous changes allowing for a more dynamic development of RES in Poland. The RES auctions of 2018 and those planned for this year will provide a significant stimulus for the Polish economy. Due to competitive advantage in prices, wind power will not only contribute to Poland’s fulfilment of EU’s RES targets, but will also protect end customers from rising energy prices – said minister Krzysztof Kubów.
Source: Ministry of Energy
The plans of PGE Group, already a leader in renewables in Poland, are in line with these plans.
– In the coming years we will increase our share in “green” energy even more. We are pursuing an ambitious target of a 25-percent share of domestic energy production form RES in 2030. It will be possible thanks to deployment of about 2.5 GW of PV capacity, as well as expansion of wind capacity, first onshore, and later offshore in the Baltic Sea. We are currently building two wind farms with a total capacity of 90 MW (Starza/Rybice and Karnice II), which won the auction in November 2018, and we are active in the PV market – said Arkadiusz Sekściński, acting CEO of PGE Renewables, the owner of Lotnisko Wind Farm (with 94 MW capacity) and Żarnowiec pumped storage power plant, the largest in Poland (ca. 800 MW), which have been visited by the representatives of the media and public administration during the study tour.
In the coming 3 years, Poland’s total installed capacity in onshore wind will increase by 3.5 GW to 10 GW. This increase result from the auction of November 2018 and the one planned for late 2019.
– Wind is the cheapest source of energy available on the market, and cheaper electricity increases the competitiveness of Polish entrepreneurs and leaves more money in Poles’ wallets. Further investments in green energy will also improve the financial situation of many municipalities and create new jobs around the sector, which is important during the energy transition – Janusz Gajowiecki, President of the Polish Wind Energy Association (PWEA), indicates the benefits from the emerging investment boom.
According to PWEA’s calculations, only thanks to the increase in total onshore capacity by 3.5 GW, during their 25-year lifetime, i.e. from commissioning of the wind farms to their first comprehensive modernization, the local and state budget will gain over PLN 4bn in total, or PLN 165m per year. The local self-government budgets will obtain PLN 3.5bn thanks to property taxes paid by wind investors. Another 600m will come from income taxes. In the 3-year construction period of wind farms about 20,000 temporary jobs will be created, and 1,750 jobs will appear during their operation.
Photos from Żarnowiec power plant
The increase in wind capacity brings benefits both to direct beneficiaries, e.g. land owners, who will earn approx. PLN 150m per year, or PLN 3.7bn over the 25-year period of operation, and to all Polish citizens. Newly built wind farms will help increase the competitiveness of the Polish economy, which will also generate fewer emissions. The additional 3.5 GW of capacity will help avoid the emissions of 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide per year. In turn, lower electricity prices will generate up to PLN 4.5bn in savings for companies and households.
In the coming years, the number of orders will increase. Thanks to last year’s and recently adopted amendments to the RES Act, in the coming years Poland will become an enormous construction site for renewables. The demand will increase not only for products offered by TFKable Group, but also for other industries, including construction.
Photos from TFKable Group’s plant
– We believe that the development of offshore wind in Poland will translate into more orders and increased production in our plants. Let’s also not forget that for many years the Polish industry has been cooperating in construction, assembly and maintenance of offshore and onshore wind farms virtually all over the world. We have the necessary competences, technologies and skills in that area – says Piotr Mirek, Board Representative for offshore wind farms in the Baltic Sea at TFKable Group.
Experts’ calculations show indicate that installing 6 GW of capacity in offshore wind farms, i.e. half the potential estimated by PWEA as feasible in the Baltic Sea, will require 77,000 direct and indirect jobs throughout the country and will contribute approx. PLN 60bn to the Polish GDP and PLN 15bn in CIT and VAT tax revenues by 2030.
Domestic entrepreneurs will also benefit. In the scenario of building 6 GW in the Baltic Sea, the demand for copper from the cable manufacturing industry would reach ca. 27,000 tonnes. Offshore wind power could also become the largest project in terms of demand for steel. Building 6 GW throughout the next decade would require 1.1-1.2 million tonnes of steel.
– Thanks to the dynamic development of onshore and offshore wind power more and more Polish companies could become part of the supply chain of wind turbines and services for the wind power sector. Today there are about 140 such companies. For global equipment manufacturers this would be an impulse to locate their production facilities in our country – claims Janusz Gajowiecki.