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Created on: 2018-01-29 16:36:41
Last update: 2019-03-01 10:57:54 BankTrack
Fundacja "Rozwoj TAK - Odkrywki NIE"
Diana Maciaga, Climate Campaigner at Pracownia na rcecz Wszystkich Istot (Association Workshop for All Beings)
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About Energa Group
The Energa Group is a Polish state owned energy company. Its core business entails the distribution, generation and sale of electricity. Energa is one of the four largest energy companies in Poland and the third distribution system operator (DSO) in Poland in terms of volume of electrical energy supplied to end-customers. Energa operates coal, hydropower, wind, biomass, and photovoltaic power plants with a total installed generation capacity of approximately 1.3 GW. Energa's electricity generation is 57% based on coal power. This percentage share will increase if Energa starts operating the new 1,000 MW Ostrołęka C coal power plant. As of September 2017, the company held assets totalling PLN 15.54 billion (EUR 3.74 billion).
What must happen
Financial institutions should avoid financing Energa via corporate loans and bonds while the company is pursuing its plans for the Ostroleka coal power plant. The loans provided by the European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Nordic Investment Bank should be terminated due to the serious possibility of usage of those funds for the Ostroleka C plant.
Daniel Obajtek |
listed on Warsaw Stock Exchange
The Polish State Treasury is the majority shareholder (51.52%), with the Ministry of Energy as the overseeing authority. Among Energa's other key shareholders are: OFE private pension funds (8.78%), Vanguard Group (2.37%), Allianz Global Investors (1.76%), Grantham MVO&Co (1.07%). Energa's complete shareholder structure can be viewed here.
Studies have estimated that Energa's plants contribute significantly to the deterioration of health in Poland. The pollution emitted by the Ostrołęka A+B power plants is estimated to result in 129 premature deaths annually, 1,370 years of life lost and more than 30,000 lost work days. The Elblag plant is estimated to contribute to 16 premature deaths each year, 165 years of life lost and about 3,500 lost work days. The planned Ostrołęka C coal power plant would further increase these impacts. It is estimated that over its 40 years projected lifespan it would be responsible for: between 900 and 2,000 premature deaths, over 3,000 cases of bronchitis, and between 50,000 and 100,000 cases of asthma attacks in children. Lost working days would amount to approximately 420,000 (Lifting Europe's Dark Cloud, 2016).
Energa operates coal, hydropower, wind, biomass, and photovoltaic power plants with a total capacity of approximately 1.3 GW. Energa's electricity generation is 57% based on coal power. This share will increase when Energa starts operating the new 1,000 MW Ostrołęka C coal power plant.
Energa's main impact on the environment and climate change is related to its contribution to overall Polish CO2 emissions (in 2015 these amounted to 294,879,000 tonnes). In 2015 Energa was responsible for 2.4 million tonnes of CO2 generated. Its two main facilities (Ostrołęka A+B and Elblag) also emit other air pollutants. Each year together they produced almost 11,000 tonnes of SO2 and 5,500 tonnes of nitrogen oxides (Greenpeace Wegiel Zabija report). These pollutants not only harm people's health, but also corrode buildings and damage the environment by causing deforestation and acidifying waterways to the detriment of aquatic life.
The intense water usage and waste dumping at the Ostrołęka power plants have also led to the polluting of local water sources – most notably the Narew river – by heavy metals such as: cadmium, nickel, zinc, copper, chromium, cobalt and lead. Recent studies show that the Narew river is contaminated beyond the 'l geochemical' class with cadmium segments. The Narew's aquatic flora is polluted by a high accumulation of zinc, lead and chromium in the underwater roots parts.
Poland's first free online calculator shows coal Ostroleka C’s (un)viability
Instrat analysts publish an open-source online viability (NPV) calculator of the coal power plant Ostroleka C. So far, four studies on Ostroleka C have been published showing a loss between PLN -2.3 bn to over PLN -6.2 billion negative NPV - much more than the investment CAPEX. The latest update sheds an even more negative light on the project - the baseline scenario suggests a loss of PLN -7.5 bn and electricity price of 500 PLN/MWh (LCOE, 117€/MWh). That is ⅓ more than the electricity cost from photovoltaics (360 PLN/MWh) and almost twice of onshore wind farms (260 PLN/MWh, IRENA). The model gives a detailed overview of the economic situation of all similar new coal-fired power plants in Poland and Europe. The model is based on CC-BY SA 4.0 license.
Tempus challenges European Commission’s approval of Polish energy subsidy scheme
Ostrołęka C's capacity contract might be at risk as UK's 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. Polish state-run utility companies Enea and Energa said that the subsidies from capacity market would help to finance the new coal-fired unit in the northeast of Poland.
New controversies yet still no financing model
According to the report published by Energa, the financing model for Ostrołęka C project was to be completed by January 28th 2019. The deadline wasn't met yet there has been no announcement from any of the two investors regarding financing. Interestingly, new information has been revealed by the Polish press.
According to Newsweek.pl the head of the department responsible for investment risk assessment in PZU – the largest Polish insurer which could provide insurance for Ostrołęka C – is no other than Konrad Tchórzewski, son of the minister for energy. The newspaper also undermines the Ministry for Energy's position that this power plant will be beneficial for Poland: the Americans and the French will earn money on the construction, while Russia will provide coal. What the Poles will get are fines for tons of CO2 emissions and expensive electricity.
Dziennik Gazeta Prawna speculates that construction costs may increase from 6 to 8 bln PLN (1.4 to 1.86 bln EUR). In order to reduce them GE Power/Alstom Power, the consortium chosen to be the general contractor, could well hire a subcontractor from China. According to the newspaper's source it could be China Energy Construction Group.
Coal could be falling from sky, and Ostrołęka C still would not be viable - new study shows
Shortly after the results of Polish capacity market auctions were released, an updated version of the viability study of Ostrołęka C once again showed that burning coal is economic nonsense. Despite a vast subsidy of 2.7 bn PLN (0.6 bn EUR) and 15-year long contract, the unit would still bring no profit at all for the investors. The project would bring investors a negative net present value (NPV) of ca. -6.2 bn PLN (-1.5 bn EUR), compared to -2,3 bn PLN as the previous report showed. This exceeds the investment budget of ca. 6 bn PLN (1.4 bn EUR).
An updated version of the report “Capacity market and the failed rescue. Updated report: Ostrołęka C - next steps for Europe’s last coal power plant” by Michał Hetmański from Instrat Foundation embeds latest events and data into the model: capacity market auctions results, reform of the ETS framework and the recently published Polish Energy Policy 2040. Results of the study clearly show deep unviability of the Ostrołęka C project.
Full Report available in Polish, with executive summary in English.
Financing model for Ostrołęka C to be announced on January 28, 2019
According to report published by Energa an agreement was signed, the intention of which is to conclude a new investment agreement specifying the terms of cooperation between the Issuer and ENEA S.A. and financing the Ostrołęka C Power Plant ("Project") in the Construction Phase. ENERGA S.A. and ENEA S.A. declared a financial commitment to the amount of: ENEA PLN 1 billion, ENERGA not less than PLN 1 billion and other investors - in the remaining scope necessary to cover the Project's financial outlays
The schedule and terms of financial involvement of individual entities will be agreed by January 28, 2019. Energa will inform the conclusion of an agreement or agreements regarding the financing of the Project in a separate current report.
Management Board of Elektrownia Ostrołęka Sp. z o.o. on the issue a notice to proceed related to the construction of Ostrołęka Power Plant C
On 29 December 2018 the Management Board of ENERGA SA received information that on 28 December 2018 the Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders of Elektrownia Ostrołęka Sp. z o.o. had granted its consent to the issue a notice to proceed ("NTP") related to the construction of Ostrołęka Power Plant C with a capacity of 1,000 MW.
On 28 December 2018 the Management Board of Elektrownia Ostrołęka Sp. z o.o. had issued notice to proceed related to the construction of Ostrołęka Power Plant C for the general contractor, a Consortium of GE Power Sp. z o.o. as the leader and ALSTOM Power Systems S.A.S.
Even with the capacity contract Ostrołęka C will not be able to cope with market realities
The auction of the capacity market for 2023 was closed with a price of PLN 202.99 per kilowatt (kW). According to preliminary results, the new Ostrołęka Power Plant unit will receive a 15-year contract. According to Carbon Tracker economists, Ostrołęka C would need subsidies from the capacity market amounting to as much as PLN 400 for each kW offered, for a period of 15 years.
According to the published preliminary results of Friday's capacity auction, Ostrołęka C power plant will receive a contract, which is a source of additional financing for the investment. However, this does not remove doubts as to the economic rationality of the project. Management of the company is not gambling and therefore the investment of Enea and Energa in the new Ostrołęka C coal unit should not be continued - says ClientEarth.
Ostrołęka C with 15-year capacity contract
On 22nd of December 2018 Polskie Sieci Elektroenergetyczne S.A. published initial result of the capacity market main auction for 2023, including the closing price for the capacity auction which is 202.99 PLN/kW/annum. Elektrownia Ostrołęka Sp. z o.o., in which Energa S.A. holds 50% of shares, concluded capacity agreement for 15 years with a capacity obligation of 853 MW, under which the revenues may amount to PLN 173 million per one year, starting form year 2023 (revenues over a period of 15 years, may amount to PLN 2 596 million), whereas the price of the capacity obligation for long-term capacity contracts will be subject to an annual indexation of the average annual consumer price index.
The auction closing price provided does not constitute the final capacity auction result. The final results of the capacity auction shall be announced by the President of the Energy Regulatory Office in the Public Information Bulletin on his website, on the first working day following the 21st day after the end of the capacity auction. Until then, all contracts of sale of capacity obligations are conditional.
NTP for Ostrołęka C depends on the result of the capacity auction
Energa S.A. announced that it will vote in favor of adopting a resolution on expressing consent to issue an NTP for
the general contractor of Ostrołeka C. The resolution is going to be taken under provided that during a power capacity auction with the delivery period beginning in 2023, the price obtained by ‘Ostrołęka C’ Project for the power stated
in the conditional certificate, i.e. 852,603 MW, for a period of 15 years is not lower than defined in the auction strategy.
Minister of Energy admits that Ostrołęka C is unnecessary and economically harmful
At COP24 Climate Summit in Katowice Minister of Energy Krzysztof Tchórzewski confirmed construction of Ostrołęka C power plant to be against Poland's economic and environmental interest. Now the minister justifies it with the necessity of cooperation with the European Union and the Baltic States and by the need to "meet deadlines". Stop Ostrołęka C coalition comments: no international documents support it. The Ministry of Energy have not presented any strategic document which would confirm that the Ostrołęka C power plant is an important element in the synchronization of the Baltic States' power systems with Continental Europe - neither documents of the European Commission, nor the Polish Power Grid or the Lithuanian operator LitGrid mention it.
To the best of our knowledge, a document stating that Ostrołęka C is necessary for synchronisation with the Baltic states simply does not exist. When other arguments have failed, Minister Tchórzewski reaches for a new, irrational justification for this coal project. Claiming that building a coal power plant is required by European solidarity and, at the same time, lack of any solidarity in protecting the climate by moving away from coal is the height of hypocrisy - comments Diana Maciąga, Climate Coordinator at the Association Workshop for All Beings.
Investor LGIM-lack of funds for Poland's planned Ostroleka coal plant a concern
Legal & General Investment Management, Britain’s largest asset manager, said it has serious concerns over Poland’s planned development of the Ostroleka C due to unsecured financing for the project. LGIM is invested in both Enea and Energa.
“We have serious concerns about the development of a new coal plant in Poland, Ostroleka C given that they have not yet secured capacity market payments or confirmed third-party financing, (...) We don’t believe the companies should proceed with this project until they can provide us with reassuring evidence of its financial viability and the role it will play in meeting the energy security and the carbon targets in Poland and Europe,” said Meryam Omi, the head of sustainability and responsible investment strategy at LGIM.
Energa EGM votes for an NTP for Ostroleka C
On September 3, the Extraordinary General Meeting of Energa voted for issueing a Notice to Proceed (NTP) for the Ostrołęka C power plant. Shareholders holding 23,5 million shares voted against, 4.6 million abstained. Neither the members of the Supervisory Board nor the Management Board of the company were present, disregarding the good investor relations practices. Issuing NTP before the capacity auction (duo on December 21 2018) breaks the obligation towards Energa’s bondholders: in the Eurobonds prospectus from February 2017, Energa AB stated that an NTP would not be issued before the auction. Following the EGM decision, both Enea and Energa suffered drop in share prices.
In order for the construction works to start the same consent must be expressed by the EGM of ENEA, which is on September 24, 2018.
New report smashes Ostrołęka C - the power plant shows deep unprofitability
The latest report by Michał Hetmański,Instrat Foundation, "Ostrołęka C - what's next with the last coal-fired power plant in Europe?" shows complete lack of profitability of the largest new coal-fired power plant in the EU and serious legal doubts connected with it. Ostrołęka C can get only 15% of its revenues from the capacity market. Even under optimistic assumptions it will never provide investors with return on the investment. Ostrołęka C requires "adding" at least PLN 2.3 billion throughout its life cycle, i.e. an additional approx. 50% of the construction cost. In the optimistic scenario of a very slow increase in the prices of CO2 emission allowances and rapid rise in electricity prices - the power plant still turns out to be unprofitable. The power plant can generate electricity (LCOE) at a price of 488 PLN / MWh or even 505 PLN / MWh. This is much more than in the case of just recently developing polish wind farms (300), offshore farms (420) and even photovoltaic (440).
Energa's rating downgraded due to Ostrołeka C
On July 16 EuroRating downgraded Energa’s rating from BBB to BBB- in response to Energa signing the contract with GE Power/Alstom to build Ostrołeka C power plant.EuroRating assessed the current structure of Energa financing as relatively weak and pointed out that another large expenditure for the construction of the Ostrołęka C power plant (mainly financed by the increase in debt) will cause its further deterioration. The agency also noted that this power plant would need to use imported coal and thus harm Poland’s energy safety and advised withdrawal from this project on its early stage.
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