Tempus challenges European Commission’s approval of Polish energy subsidy scheme, claiming it shuts cleaner, cheaper technologies out of the market and deprives European consumers of a better future. This threatens to invalidate power auctions, including the contract for Ostrołęka C.
Tempus Energy provides DSR services, which enable consumers to reduce energy consumption in the peak when it is most expensive, and to switch to energy consumption at times when demand for energy is lower and renewable energy sources produce the most energy, which results in a lower price.
The Polish capacity market introduced in 2018 provided utilities with almost EUR one billion to be paid by taxpayer's for maintenance and construction of new power plants - it will be added to the electricity bills as a power fee. The 15-year contract for Ostrołęka C alone is worth as much as PLN 2.7 billion in subsidies for the production of energy from coal, about PLN 173 million annually. Meanwhile, DSR suppliers may apply only for annual contracts.
Sara Bell, CEO of Tempus Energy stated in a press release:
"We have one planet. We need to work together to rapidly deploy technologies and commercial solutions in the interest of consumers so we can decarbonise as cheaply and quickly as possible. Our legal action will ensure this happens."
"Achieving the climate protection targets set in the Paris Agreement requires us to move away from coal by 2030. Meanwhile, state aid coming from the capacity market is to be granted until the late 1930s. In Poland as much as 80% of this support goes to coal. It is crucial to ensure that this mechanism does not favour projects based on fossil fuels, which is why we welcome the initiative of Tempus Energy", comments Diana Maciąga, Climate and Energy Coordinator at the Pracownia na rzecz Wszystkich Istot Association.
In November 2018, the EU Court of Justice upheld Tempus Energy's appeal against the UK capacity market and ordered the European Commission to conduct an in-depth investigation, cancel planned auctions and suspend payments under approved contracts. Tempus also demanded that the UK government reimburse consumers for theier £5.6 billion expanses on capacity market.
"The Polish capacity market is modelled directly on the UK's mechanism, which is why a similar judgment of the CJEU is likely. This would mean that PLN 2.7 billion of state aid for Ostrołęka C will not be paid. This power plant, even with subsidies from the capacity market, is deeply unprofitable and not viable. Without them it will turn out to be a total financial catastrophe which will plunge Polish companies responsible for its construction and threaten the Polish energy sector. Energa and Enea should immediately resign from this project, and PGE should officially stop considering financial involvement in Elektrownia Ostrołęka C", sums up Diana Maciąga.