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Contract for difference – the optimal solution for a nuclear power plant. Miłosz Motyka comments

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The Ministry of Climate has already presented to the European Commission the basic assumptions of the contract for difference for the first nuclear power plant – informed the deputy head of this ministry, Miłosz Motyka. He said that currently the contract for difference seems to be the “optimal solution”.

– Talks with the European Commission about the financial support system are already underway at the working level. At the moment, the contract for difference looks like the optimal solution. We have already presented the basic assumptions of such a contract – said the deputy minister.

The Contract for Difference as a form of public aid requires approval by the European Commission. As Motyka pointed out, “we certainly have clear support for nuclear energy on the European side.”

What is a contract for difference?

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Contract for difference is a type of support, a state guarantee of purchase at a fixed price (reference price) of electricity produced during the period of validity of the contract with its producer. When market energy prices are lower than the reference price, the positive difference is paid to the manufacturer. When energy prices are higher than the reference price, the supporting party receives the difference. The deputy minister emphasized that in the program for the construction of large-scale nuclear energy, the government is sticking to the schedules contained in PPEJ, i.e., e.g. launching the first nuclear unit in 2033. – The Ministry of Climate is currently working on updating the Polish Nuclear Energy Program (PPEJ), and as part of it, it is analyzing, in addition to other changes, also the inclusion of a separate strategy for the development of small nuclear reactors (SMRs) within the PPEJ, Motyka said. The current version of PPEJ from 2020 in relation to SMRs indicates that their commercial implementation can be expected around 2040, no construction contracts have been concluded, therefore, at this stage it is not possible to reliably and reliably estimate the future costs of this type of facilities. The technical characteristics of SMR reactors indicate that they are not superior to large reactors in any respect, and in some areas they are significantly inferior to them – states the Program, updated in 2020.

The Internal Security Agency is to re-examine the reactor construction project

The Ministry of Environmental Protection is also analyzing the processes of issuing decisions for the project of building BWRX-300 reactors by the OSGE company (Orlen Synthos Green Energy – a company of Orlen and Synthos – editor’s note). At the beginning of December 2023, Minister of Climate and Environment in the government Mateusz Morawiecki, with a negative opinion of the ABW, issued six basic decisions for the construction of 24 reactors using the BWRX-300 technology for locations in Ostrołęka, Włocławek, Stawy Monowskie, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Nowa Huta and Stalowa Wola. – We also asked the ABW, due to the change in the Agency’s management and supervision, to respond to its already issued opinions on the project and for the ABW, under the new management, to check again whether the interest of the State Treasury was properly secured – said Motyka. “- There will be a position of the Internal Security Agency, and then decisions will be made by the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Assets. We do not prejudge any further steps regarding the further fate of this project – noted the deputy minister. He also emphasized that the new Orlen management board, selected in a competition, will also analyze the decisions and structure after its appointment. ownership of OSGE. – However, this will only apply to the ownership structure, and not to the technology itself – he emphasized.

Read also: Will your electricity bills increase by 80 percent? Reply by the deputy minister

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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