Poland Bans Wind Power & Orders a Double Helping of Coal to Keep the Lights On

“Over-run by these things, faced with thousand of furious neighbours demanding an end to the onslaught, and spiralling power costs, Poland has mounted an enormous about face: where wind power was the flavour of the month for a year or two, it’s been hit with an outright ban.

Worse still for Polish wind-worshippers, their government, faced with an erratic power supply and rising prices, has decided to serve up a double helping of coal to keep the lights on.

Poland Shuns Wind, Doubles Down on Coal-Reliant Future
Powermag
Sonal Patel
1 August 2016

Poland, a country where hard coal and lignite power plants currently generate about 85% of the power, has passed a law that stymies a wind power expansion and is now mulling draft legislation that will help boost investments in new coal capacity.

The eastern European country has bucked the trend toward renewable power that many countries on the continent are following, citing energy security reasons. But while Poland is one of the most energy-intensive economies in the European Union (EU), it has one of the most isolated power systems in the bloc.

As a temperature spike last summer demonstrated, the nation’s power supply is stretched tight.

In August 2015, when a lasting heat wave reduced the amount of water available for plant cooling, some power units were forced to shut down or operate at reduced load.

Paired with other unexpected plant shutdowns (Figure 3), it prompted state-owned grid operator Polskie Sieci Elektroenergetyczne to introduce temporary restrictions on power consumption that affected more than 1,600 mainly industrial customers.” Read more .. 

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