Breaking: Polish Parliament Passes Offshore Wind Act

Poland’s Senate has unanimously passed the Offshore Act regulating the development of offshore wind farms in the Polish Baltic Sea.

The bill has now cleared both chambers of the Polish Parliament, the Sejm and the Senate, marking the end of the legislative process in this institution.

The bill is expected to be signed into law by Poland’s President Andrzej Duda shortly and come into force in late January or early February, the Polish Wind Energy Association (PWEA) said.

The Senate approved the Offshore Act without adding any amendments.

”This is a historic moment and a key act not only for our energy, mostly based on fossil fuels, but also for our economy,” said Kamila Tarnacka, vice-president of PWEA.

”The regulations contained in the so-called Offshore Act, which is the basis for the development of wind farms in the Polish part of the Baltic Sea, will support the process of transformation of Poland towards low-emission for the next decades. Launching investments worth around PLN 130 billion will help to reduce the negative effects of the slowdown caused by the pandemic.

Last year, the Polish government published the revised draft offshore wind bill which would allow for 5.9 GW of capacity to be offered via Contracts for Difference (CfDs) by the end of June 2021.

This capacity will be allocated to projects which are at the most advanced stages of development. Some of these projects could be operational by 2025.

The CfDs will be granted by way of an administrative decision by the President of the Energy Regulatory Office (URE).

The capacity in the first phase of development corresponds to the real potential of advanced projects, i.e. those that already have or will be able to sign a connection agreement within a specified period of time.

The second phase of development will include two auctions, the first in 2025 and the second in 2027, both for 2.5 GW of capacity, bringing Poland’s total offshore wind capacity either operational or under development to 10.9 GW by 2027.

”The energy potential of the Baltic Sea is enormous and the conditions in the Polish part of the sea are among the best for this type of investment. We should take advantage of this. Ultimately, we can connect up to 28 GW of capacity in offshore wind farms to the Polish system and thus become the region’s leader,” said Tarnacka.

Photo: Ørsted; Illustration