On 30 November 2020, the Polish Energy Regulatory Office published information on a new electricity capacity charge for 2021. This charge was initially introduced in the Capacity Market Act, adopted into the law in 2017, and scheduled to become effective in October 2020. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the regulatory implementation has been postponed to 1 January 2021.
The new capacity charge will be a useful support mechanism to stabilize electricity supplies within the Polish energy market in the long term. By imposing capacity charges on consumers during high-demand hours, the government is incentivizing electricity consumers who can adjust their schedule to shift energy usage from high-demand hours to other times, alleviating demand stress on the grid and reduce potential system risks.
According to the existing rules, the capacity charge applies to every energy consumer in Poland. Poland’s Energy Regulatory Office is the appointed government entity responsible for assessing and calculating capacity charges on an annual basis. For residential consumers, the capacity charge is capped at 10,46 PLN per month per household. For commercial and industrial consumers, the rate is set at 0.0762 PLN/kWh for electricity consumption during specified hours, Monday to Friday from 7 AM to 10 PM (15 consecutive hours of the day), excluding public holidays falling on a weekday. This new charge will be reflected on consumers’ electricity distribution invoices from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2021.
In addition, the Capacity Market Act also contains targeted relief for certain energy-intensive industries. As of the date of this Research Note, no exemptions have been approved; they are under the European Commission's notification assessment. NUS Consulting Group will continue to closely monitor regulatory and industry developments in the Polish energy market and publish market research notes on relevant topics.