The urgent need to expand national power lines has long been discussed. Their inefficiency is evidenced by the mass refusal to connect additional wind or solar farms to the network. Rapidly expanding renewable energy sources, the construction of large-scale offshore wind farms and nuclear power plants in the north of the country, as well as the projected increase in electricity demand, forced Polskie Sieci Elektroenergetyczne to present a new development plan for the next decade. . The operator proposed revolutionary solutions, including the construction of a special transmission corridor connecting the northern and southern parts of Poland..
– In the next decade, it is planned to decommission a significant part of coal-fired power plants, including power plants in the center and south of the country, as well as to launch large sources in the north. This will result in an unprecedented flow of energy from the north to the south of the country and increase the load on the transmission network.. Our proposal is to build a direct transmission line from Pomerania to Silesia, which will allow us to control the flow of energy regardless of the flow of energy in the national network, explains Maciej Przybylski, Director of System Development at PSE.
He adds Such a corridor will allow efficient transmission of high power, even up to 3-4 GW, almost all over Poland.. – In this way, we will improve national networks and create conditions for the connection of new institutions. At the same time, we will significantly reduce power transmission losses. Our calculations show this By building a direct current line, we can thus save more than 200 million PLN per year – Przybylski explains.
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This will be the first onshore DC transmission line in Poland. This technology is used for cross-border connections – an already operating submarine cable connecting Poland and Sweden, or the Harmony Link between Lithuania and Poland under construction. The construction of the line will take about 10 years and will cost about 10 billion PLN. The alternative is to make a number of significant investments in AC networks scattered throughout the country.
Close the gap
It is another revolutionary proposal PSE was planning to build its own power plant, which will operate in an emergency situation, when power demand is at its peak. And this demand will increase in the coming years. They will contribute, among others, to the dynamic development of heat pumps and electric vehicles, as well as the energy needs of new industries and hydrogen production.
PSE is considering the construction of a 0.5 GW power plant, which will be commissioned in 2026, for example, a gas-fired power plant. It will cost more than 1 billion PLN. Why is it so important? Because in the coming years, old coal-fired units will be removed from the network en masse, and very few new power plants will be built, which will work stably regardless of weather conditions.
PSE forecasts show that energy companies will make the announced investments only if they make them By 2026, the system will no longer have the 3.5 GW of power needed to balance the system and thus ensure uninterrupted power supply to consumers.. For comparison, the capacity of the largest power unit in Poland – a coal-fired plant at the Kozienice Power Plant – reaches 1,075 GW.
This difference will increase in the coming years. It will not reach 6 GW in 2030 and 17.5 GW in 2040. PSE hopes that the market impulse will convince investors to implement future energy projects. However, to be sure, the operator would like to have its own generation facility that can be operated in crisis situations.
To fill this large gap, PSE’s solutions include the construction of additional nuclear units (the operator predicted the construction of a nuclear power plant), gas, biomass, hydrogen facilities or energy storage facilities. Other options include extending coal-fired power plants or increasing electricity imports from neighboring countries.
A number of projects
The PSE plan is also a whole set of small investments that are important for the proper functioning of the system in individual regions. It will be necessary, including the construction of infrastructure for the extraction of electricity from the planned wind farms in the Baltic Sea, as well as the first nuclear power plant to be located in Pomerania. In addition, it is necessary to strengthen the network for other industrial customers in special economic zones, mainly in the south of the country. In addition, there are investments in the supply of high-speed railway substations for the construction of the Central Communications Port.
In addition, there are additional projects for the construction of small and large green facilities. Investors plan to build mostly solar farms, but we will also see an influx of investment in windmills once the onshore wind farm barriers are announced. The national electricity network must be ready for this.
On the other hand, PSE does not plan to upgrade the 750 kV Rzeszów-Chmielnicka line, which connects Poland and Ukraine, which has not been used for almost 30 years.
In total, PSE wants to spend about 36 billion PLN on investments in 2023-2032. Part of the funds will come from EU funds, and the rest will come from the operator’s energy buyers.. So you have to take into account the higher distribution fee, which is an important element of the electricity bill. According to estimates, currently the tariff for the activities of PSE is 2-3 percent. average electricity bill.