Poland’s largest utility announces pivot from coal to renewables

2020-10-20

PGE has announced a strategy to go 100% renewable by 2050, but it depends on passing responsibility for coal mines to another Polish state-owned entity

Poland’s largest utility has said it wants to get rid of its coal assets and invest in renewables, becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

PGE, which is majority state-owned, revealed plans on Monday to transfer its coal mines and power stations to a new state-owned entity. The strategy depends on the Polish government agreeing to manage the coal business and the European Commission giving approval for state aid, which are both uncertain.

“Within a decade, the PGE Group will become a completely different company,” said PGE president Wojciech Dąbrowski in a statement on the new strategy.

Currently, more than 80% of PGE’s electricity generation is based on coal. This has made it difficult for the company to attract financing as many banks have vowed not to support coal.

In response to an investor question, Dąbrowski reportedly said that if it did not separate its coal assets, the business would go bankrupt in a year and a half.

By cutting coal loose, the company is aiming to generate 50% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030 and 100% by 2050.

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Climate Home News, 20 October 2020
; https://www.climatechangenews.com/2020/10/20/polands-largest-utility-announces-pivot-coal-renewables/