The Polish Energy Regulatory Office (ERO) has released the results of its latest solar and wind auctions that were held in December. Through three auctions, ERO has allocated a total of 1.33GW, of which 870MW belongs to solar PV. Collectively, the tendered projects are expected to produce 13.9TWh of electricity annually. This story was initially reported by various renewable energy news websites.
The tendered PV projects that are more than 1MW in scale came to 570MW. Their minimum bid price reached PLN 0.20785 or USD 0.05072 per kWh, which is slightly lower than the one previously discovered. The tendered wind power projects that are more than 1MW in scale came to 460MW.
In another auction that was held this November for PV and wind projects smaller than 1MW, there were 182 bidders that submitted 401 bids. All of the bids were for solar PV. The lowest winning bid price was PLN 0.219 or USD 0.05344 per kWh. This auction allocated around 300MW.
Poland Has Added 3.2GW of PV Generation in Development This Year
ERO stated that the number of bids that it has received is quite high, so the selection of the winning bids is based on not only price but also the order in which the bids were submitted.
Poland has also held renewable energy auctions that tender generation capacity for geothermal, bioenergy, and hydropower. Nevertheless, solar PV makes up more than 90% of the winning bids in these auctions.
Poland’s renewable auctions that were held this September and October permitted bidders to combine solar PV and wind power, but no such “hybrid” bids were submitted.
In the auctions that were held this December, Swedish renewable energy developer OX2 won 28MW of solar PV and almost 120MW for wind power.
Katarzyna Suchcicka, OX2’s country manager for Poland, said more renewable energy projects have to be set up in the country in order to reduce the dependence on polluting fossil fuels and lower electricity rates for local consumers. Indeed, website Notes from Poland reported on December 15 that a few Polish cities topped the recent list of major cities with the worst air pollution.
To assist Poland in achieving its climate targets, the European Commission in late November approved the Polish government’s request to extend its policy program for tendering and subsidizing renewable energy projects. The program will thus be in effect up to 2027.
Trade association SolarPower Europe released a report in the middle of December stating that Poland’s PV generation capacity in development came to about 2.5GW for 2020, and another 3.5GW has been added for 2021. SolarPower Europe pointed out that apart from renewable energy auctions, the Polish government has also implemented policies such as PV for self-consumption and a net metering scheme to incentivize the installation of PV systems. In particular, the residential segment of the Polish PV market can benefit from the synergy between the net metering scheme and a tax refund program. Additionally, the “My Electricity” program offers households up to PLN 5,000 for installing a PV system.
Poland has become an increasingly favorable market for solar PV as its government initiates policies and reforms that promote the installation of renewable generation systems. For example, Lightsource bp is working with a local partner to develop nine PV projects that will have a total generation capacity of 757MW and participate in the upcoming renewable energy auctions. Also, RP Global will be developing 1GW of PV and wind projects in Poland over the next two to four years.
The largest utility-scale PV project that is being developed in Poland to date is the 100MW solar park in Subcarpathian Voivodeship. Poland’s own PGE Energia Odnawialna is responsible for this project and has just secured the construction permit. The solar park is scheduled to enter operation in 2023.