Based on our own forecast model, which takes into account actual data for the first 11 months of the year 2023 and estimated data for the remaining month, electricity consumption in Poland exhibits certain distinctive trends. The bulk of the load, over 70%, is shouldered by fossil fuels predominantly coal which constitutes almost 62%. Interestingly, low carbon energy stands as the second major contributor to the electricity mix at around 25%. In terms of specific types under the low-carbon umbrella, wind power leads at roughly 14% followed by solar power, which contributes a little over 8%. It’s noteworthy that despite the heavy reliance on fossil fuels, particularly coal, low-carbon generation, chiefly wind and solar, make a significant contribution. Net imports and other smaller players like gas, oil, and biofuels, also trickle into the mix by smaller extents ranging from around 1% to almost 8%.
Considering global successful models in the expansion of low-carbon electricity generation, Poland can draw particularly from the expertise of countries like France, Slovakia, and Ukraine, which extensively utilize nuclear energy, contributing well above half of their electricity generation. Besides, nourishing the existing wind energy sector can lead Poland to emulate the success stories of Denmark and Ireland where wind power contributes close to 60% and over a third of the electricity respectively. Drawing inspiration from these models and their implication in similar geographic and economic conditions as Poland, the country can substantially increase its low-carbon generation through nuclear and wind energy augmentation.
Turning towards the historical panorama of low-carbon electricity in Poland, a clear drift in momentum becomes apparent towards the later part of the first decade of the 21st century and the succeeding years. Notably, in 2009, biofuels contributed an increase of 1.6 TWh followed by an ascension of wind power by 1.5 TWh in 2011. Despite a dip in biofuels in 2013 and 2016, wind energy steadily progressed with significant year-on-year increases except for 2018. The stride of low-carbon energy took a positive turn in the new decade with the introduction of solar energy in 2021 contributing an increase of 2 TWh. In the latest data available for 2023, it's promising to see notable increases in solar and wind energy by 5 TWh and 1.5 TWh respectively, as well as a commendable growth in hydropower by 1.5 TWh, though biofuels suffered a substantial decline in the same year. This historical trend is suggestive of progressive orientation towards diversified low-carbon energy sources indicating a move towards a greener future.