21 February 2013

“Not Possible” for Polish Government to Support Nuclear Project

Polish treasury minister Mikolaj Budzanowski unexpectedly stated that “in today’s circumstances it is not possible for the government to support the construction of a nuclear power plant”. In a 18 February 2013 interview with Polish daily Parkiet, Budzanowski added:”I am convinced that it is worthwhile to develop the shale [gas] project, regardless of the opinion of other European countries“. Unlike nuclear power, the minister says,”shale [gas] is a matter for today". State-owned energy company Polska Grupa Energetyczna (PGE) has launched a massive promotion campaign in areas around three proposed sites—Zarnowiec, Gaski amd Choczewo—for a potential nuclear power plant, which would be the first in the country. But one site, Mielno, was already dropped after a local referendum turned out a 94 percent opposition to the project. If the Polish government withdraws its support for nuclear energy, the likelihood of the realization of a project is virtually zero. As Andrzej Sikora, chairman of Warsaw’s Energy Studies Institute put it: “Such power plants are never built anywhere without the backing of the state.”