Poland has a unique opportunity to boost its economy by nearly PLN 74bn (EUR 17.5bn) if it installs 6GW of offshore wind capacity by 2025, according to a report by Ernst & Young for the Polish Wind Energy Association (PWEA).
In the Offshore wind energy – analysis of benefits for the Polish economy and development determinants report, the consultancy estimates that offshore wind could create 31,800 new jobs in Poland by 2025.
It would also support a vibrant local supply chain. Polish companies are already involved in offshore wind, the PWEA points out. Among them are CRIST Shipyard, GSG Towers and Grupa Kapitalowa VISTAL – manufacturers of turbine towers and steel offshore structures.
Under its national renewable energy action plan, Poland is committed to installing 500MW of offshore wind capacity by 2020. "However, a target specified at such a level seems underestimated. Poland exhibits much higher potential in the area," said PWEA’s president, Wojciech Cetnarski.
A target of 6GW in the 2020s is also necessary to pre-empt a power deficit as older coal-fired plants are shut down under EU rules, Poland’s Foundation for Sustainable Energy said last autumn.
Licences for Polish offshore wind development have already been awarded, but developers are still considering whether to go ahead with projects, pending the introduction of a support framework under a new energy law.