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Poland

Poland

Polish offshore plans suffer shale gas setback

POLAND: Poland's offshore wind sector has been dealt a major blow by the country's Ministry of Environment, which is opposing most of 40 proposed farm locations because they interfere with future shale gas exploitation.

For almost a year now, Poland’s Ministry of Infrastructure has been reviewing applications from 59 investors, who are competing for 40 sites in the Polish part of the Baltic Sea where the erection of wind farms is planned. They are theoretically planning to develop up to 20GW of wind capacity in the area.

But their plans are now under threat because, according to the Ministry of Environment, most of the area is rich in shale gas and aggregates reserves, and therefore should be excluded from offshore wind activity.

Bogdan Gutkowski, the president of the Polish Offshore Wind Energy Society, said the problem was serious. "Currently we are considering what steps to take to solve it," he said.

Industry experts said only four out of 40 licences for offshore wind farms would be given by the Ministry of Infrastructure, having taken the opinion of the Ministry of Environment into account.

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