The head of Poland’s state assets ministry (MAP), Jacek Sasin said that of Poland’s total coal imports that amounted to 12.3 million tonnes, 8 million tonnes came from Russia, while domestic extraction was 46 million tonnes.
Asked about the import cost, Sasin claimed that the ministry did not have the data.
“The value of contracts for the import of coal from abroad is the economic secret of companies conducting the business. MAP does not have this type of data.”
Coal has always been a hot issue in the country that relies heavily on fossil fuels. Poland’s ruling right-wing PiS party, while facing criticism from environmentalists for not doing enough to improve air quality, has always tried to secure coal miners’ votes. The biggest opposition party, Civic Coalition, wants to cut out coal completely by 2040.
As much as 80 percent of the country’s electricity is coal-powered currently. And the state-owned Bełchatów Power Station in central Poland is the world’s largest lignite-fired power station. It produces 20 percent of the total power generation in Poland. One of the biggest carbon polluters in the world, the plant burns approximately 45m tonnes of coal each year and has emitted approximately 1bn tonnes of CO2 over the course of its lifetime.