Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party plans to introduce legislation that will allow the government to open new coal mines without the approval of local authorities, as reported to Reuters. PiS wants to build new mines as it expects half of the country’s electricity to be generated from coal by 2050. That would be down from 80% coal-fired electricity currently, but goes against European Union calls for member states to achieve zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Energy Minister Krzysztof Tchorzewski said, “This special legislation, which is being prepared by lawmakers is related to the fact that local authorities are not interested in new mines being built in their areas while we will need new coal deposits to secure supplies for the energy industry.”
He said the new legislation would help Poland develop the planned lignite open-pit mine Zloczew, which environmentalists say would be the country’s deepest ever open-pit mine and would displace 3,000 people from their homes. The Zloczew lignite project is owned by state-run energy group PGE and would guarantee supplies for PGE’s power plant in Belchatow.