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A Vision for Poland’s Clean Energy Transition

This report delves into Poland’s unique position as one of Europe’s most carbon-intensive economies and outlines a multifaceted strategy for a holistic energy transition. It emphasises the need for a robust, enduring policy landscape that can adapt to political shifts, ensuring investor confidence and a resilient pathway to decarbonisation. The vision calls for a diversified energy portfolio, leveraging electrification, carbon capture and storage, zero-carbon fuels, nuclear energy, and superhot rock geothermal energy and offers overarching principles for designing a fit-for-purpose climate and energy policy.

Decarbonising Poland’s Power Sector

Complementing A Vision for Poland’s Clean Energy Transition, this technical study, commissioned by Clean Air Task Force and performed by Quantified Carbon, explores scenario-based pathways for Poland to achieve a decarbonised power grid by 2050. 

By exploring a range of scenarios, from optimistic to conservative, the study presents a nuanced view of potential futures for Poland’s electricity system, highlighting the importance of a diverse technological portfolio. With 19 scenarios considered, it provides a broad spectrum of possibilities, ensuring a well-rounded understanding of the pathways toward decarbonisation, and considers aspects such as energy security, land use,  and infrastructure requirements.

Explore Poland’s Power Pathways

Leverage the comprehensive data from Decarbonising Poland’s Power System with our interactive dashboard. This digital tool allows you to engage directly with the data that shaped the study, offering a hands-on experience in exploring Poland’s energy transition scenarios. To use it, apply various filters and navigate through different decarbonisation pathways, each reflecting a unique combination of technology adoption, policy choices, and infrastructure development. 

Dashboard author: Leslie Abrahams

Questions? Please contact Tamara Lagurashvili

Table with scenarios


Scenario Name Descripción
Base Best estimate technology neutral baseline. No local opposition and NIMBY are taken into account.
VRE++ Development of costs for wine and solar follow very optimistic trends along with a strong public acceptance enabling an essentially no upper limit on expansion potential.
VRE- – Development of costs for wind and solar stagnates whilst simultaneously facing significant public opposition enabling a significantly lower maximum expansion potential of 28GW in total.
Wind fast Current wind power supply chain challenges are overcome enabling a faster build rate of onshore and offshore wind power.
Fuel prices € Fossil fuel prices rebound to EU pre-energy crisis levels by mid 2030s, facilitated by re-established pipeline network.
Fuel prices €€€ Fossil fuel prices don’t fully recover following present day’s energy crisis and instead relies on LNG.
No CCS Groundwork for carbon capture and storage (CCS) is not made reflecting a non-existent infrastructure.
CCS €€€ Costs experienced for transport and storage of CO2 becomes higher than expected.
CCS retro The potential value of CCS retrofitting of fossil-fueled power plants is investigated.
Nuclear ++ Initial nuclear projects gain good governmental support and become successful. Following projects see a learning rate owing to serial construction.
Nuclear – – Initial nuclear projects don’t obtain a strong governmental support and start off expensive.
Nuclear retro Site repurposing and partial re-powering of coal plants with nuclear power is allowed.
Nuclear slow Construction for initial nuclear projects is delayed due to lack of regulation framework.
Coal slow phaseout Coal power plants are considered vital for the power system functioning and not phased out until the 2040s.
Merged sensitivities
Status quo Combining slow phaseout of coal and no CCS, this scenario aims to reflect the most likely development of the Polish power system given current regulations and their probable development, as well as the defined decarbonisation path for the Polish economy.
No nuclear, no CCS Neither nuclear nor CCS technologies are part of energy policy.
Nuclear – -, no CCS Nuclear projects become expensive in combination with no development of CCS.
Nuclear – -, no CCS, nuclear retro Value of coal to nuclear retrofit is allowed given conservative outlook for greenfield nuclear projects and no CCS allowed.
VRE – -, no nuclear, no CCS The decarbonisation strategy heavily relies on wind and solar technologies; however, their cost decrease stagnates, and they struggle with negative public opinion (NIMBY).

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