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PKN Orlen is considering building a new gas and steam power plant in Gdansk in cooperation with Energa from the Orlen Group and the Lotos Group. The companies signed a Letter of Intent in which they declare their will to enter into joint talks. They will include the analysis and selection of the optimal configuration of the block and its location. The investment could be completed by July 2026.
– We observe great potential for the construction of new low and zero emission sources in Poland. They will constitute a pillar of the energy transformation, as well as our strategy of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. Therefore, we are analyzing the potential opportunities in this area on an ongoing basis. We also see strong business justification for the development of the energy sector in the Orlen Group. In the third quarter of this year. this segment generated an EBITDA profit of PLN1 bn, 98% higher than in the previous year. We want to continue this growth dynamics, hence the plans to develop conventional energy based on gas, which will stabilize zero-emission sources, such as offshore wind farms, says Daniel Obajtek, President of the Management Board of PKN Orlen.
Further talks between the partners of the considered project will make it possible to determine its basic assumptions and conditions, including the principles of financing or the location of the unit. The Letter of Intent binds all companies until the conclusion of relevant agreements, but no later than December 31, 2021.
The importance of low and zero-emission sources will increase due to the restrictive climate policy in the world. The implementation of its assumptions is a long-term process that will combine the transformation of the manufacturing sector in the European Union with the need to ensure energy security. This means gradual changes in the generation mix, in which new low-emission sources and regulatory sources, and in the future large energy storage, will play an increasingly important role. According to the forecasts of the International Energy Agency (IEA), by 2040 the gas-based energy segment will grow at a rate of 1.4% y / y. This indicates a clear need to use gas sources in some geographical areas.
Currently, the average emission intensity of natural gas-based generation units in Poland is more than twice lower than in the case of operating coal-fired units. Additionally, taking into account the current and forecast prices of gas, emissions and coal, the technology based on natural gas allows you to generate energy cheaper than solutions based on hard coal. The advantages of a gas solution are lower capital costs and greater flexibility of gas units, which enable balancing energy from renewable sources. Even in the long run, in which Renewable Energy Sources can play a leading role, gas-fired power plants would therefore provide significant and sometimes necessary support. As a result, the unit cost of electricity generation is clearly lower for a steam-gas unit than for a coal unit.
Currently, the Orlen Group, including the assets of the Energa Group, has approx. 3.2 GWe of installed capacity, of which more than 1 GWe in total is for two modern gas and steam units of PKN Orlen in Wloclawek and Plock, characterized by high efficiency and large possibilities of regulating work. In the Energa Group itself, the total installed capacity is 1.4 GWe. PKN Orlen has also declared, on the condition of using technology based on gas fuel, that it will participate in the financing of the Ostroleka power plant construction project and will start the investment as a partner.
Source: PKN Orlen