Analysis: Poland’s path to climate neutrality is affordable and feasible

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€32-76 billion of investments are needed, but will bring massive savingsBrussels, Belgium - 3 October 2019

Poland can reach net zero carbon emissions in a socially fair way without massive increases in EU financial support, new analysis from WWF shows. 

Poland will need to make additional investments of €32-76 billion in its power system up to 2050 to reach a near decarbonised power system, compared to business as usual. However, if it shifts its spending from coal to renewables, Poland already has significant resources to make these investments. What’s more, reaching net zero emissions by 2050 will bring Poland direct savings of €55 billion on total energy costs, as well as €200 billion of avoided health and environmental costs. 

WWF’s analysis comes as EU Environment Ministers prepare to discuss the EU’s net zero emissions target on Friday 4 October. Agreement on the target was blocked in June by Poland, Hungary, Estonia and the Czech Republic. The Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki argued in June that Poland would need financial support guarantees before agreeing to a net zero goal. This week the country’s energy minister said the transformation of Poland’s economy required €700-900 billion. 

Katie Treadwell, Energy Policy Officer at WWF European Policy Office said: 
“Poland already has the money to clean up its energy system, benefitting its workers, climate, health and electricity bills. But right now, it is mainly spending that money on polluting coal and gas. Rather than using modernisation costs as a bargaining chip in EU talks on a climate neutral target, Poland must invest in renewables and social support to coal regions. It is also crucial that the EU maintains funding to those regions, and includes tougher controls on the money, to ensure it is spent on a socially fair transition to clean energy.”

Oskar Kulik, Climate and Energy Policy Officer at WWF Poland said:
"Poland’s transition towards a carbon neutral economy will require significant investments, but in the long run it will result in lower total energy costs, and a cleaner and healthier environment. What we must avoid are lock-ins in fossil fuel technologies. This includes not only investments in coal power plants, but also direct and indirect subsidies in the mining sector or planned investments in gas infrastructure".

The analysis finds that: 



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