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Clean Air is losing its boss. What’s next for the money?

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The “Clean Air” program loses its representative – Bartłomiej Orzeł leaves his job. Environmentalists and climate activists say directly that this is the capitulation of a program that was to make Poles finally replace the old poisonous furnaces. According to experts, although gigantic government money is spent on Clean Air, in their opinion the program does not work – money is being wasted and the environment is still being poisoned. Material of the magazine “Polska i Świat”.

“I have resigned today from the position of the President’s Proxy Council of Ministers for the Clean Air Program. It was a very intense 1.5 years, a lot has been done in terms of accelerating the program and securing its financing. I leave the machine well oiled “- said Bartłomiej Orzeł in a statement on May 31.

However, there are doubts as to whether this machine is in fact well oiled and running at full speed. – I think the program is not working very well. It works too slowly and there is too little investment – says prof. Zbigniew Karaczun from the Warsaw University of Life Sciences.

The “Clean Air” program has been in operation since autumn 2018. Row Law and Justice earmarked over PLN 100 billion for this purpose. During this time, we managed to sign a total of just over 376,000 contracts for the replacement of furnaces and thermal modernization of buildings for the amount of less than PLN 6.5 billion. – For some it will be a lot, for others it will be little. First of all, we want this program to be constantly developed, to be acceptable and easy to use for the beneficiaries – emphasizes the spokesman of the Ministry of Climate and Environment, Aleksander Brzózka.

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Subsidy plans for multi-family buildings

President of the Institute for Sustainable Development, Wojciech Szymalski, says that so far “the scale of this program is not large enough to bring a significant improvement”. – At the beginning, we had 4 million single-family houses that required energy improvement, boiler replacement, so today we have not much less of them – he adds.

Smog in PolandShutterstock

Co-financing may range from PLN 30,000 to PLN 70,000, but it applies only to single-family houses. – At the moment, there is practically no support for housing communities, for multi-family buildings – says a specialist in renewable energy sources, Mikołaj Troczyński. – I know that there are such plans, but more emphasis should be placed on it, because housing communities in large cities have practically no possibility of obtaining specific aid for the energy transformation – he adds. The ministry noticed this gap after four years. A program covering multi-family housing is to be launched soon.

The submission of applications and the entire procedure are not the easiest ones. Although recently simplified, it is still a complicated process that excludes even the elderly from the very beginning.

Problems with the Clean Air program

The Polish Smog Alarm emphasizes that the program has drawbacks, but it is necessary and reminds you that saving by insulating houses is the first and most important step towards lower bills.

– The thermo-modernization sector is definitely to be improved. Subsidies offered by the ministry for the insulation of single-family houses have not changed for four years, says Piotr Siergiej from the Polish Smog Alert. – This year alone, the prices of thermal insulation materials have increased by over 50 percent – he adds.

Within a year, Warsaw has to decommission almost 11,000 boilersShutterstock

The ministry announced that there will be changes, but later, and it is now that Poles should start renovations so that in the winter, which will be extremely difficult, they will pay less for heating.

Renewable energy sources are the future

– Many people are convinced of ecological solutions, but the problem is that now, in order to start saving, you first have to spend a lot – notes Szymalski.

Experts agree: the future is renewable energy sources, because they are not only ecological but also free. – We are paying for the failure of the government for the last seven years, for stopping wind energy and for practically killing photovoltaic energy – assesses Karaczun.

Without radical changes and sincere political will, so far the future of all of us looks not in green, but in black.

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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