Poland may block EU climate package, as gas bills soar 54%

Poland may seek to block the European Union’s climate package if its arguments continue to be ignored, warns a deputy prime minister. The Polish government blames Brussels for the current rise in energy prices. Gas bills jumped by 54% in Poland at the start of this year and electricity by 24%.

Speaking to Polsat News, Jacek Sasin – who as well as being deputy prime minister also oversees the ministry for state assets – was asked if Poland should seek to “terminate” the EU’s climate package.

“Perhaps it will have to be done if it turns out that our partners in the EU remain deaf to our rational arguments,” said Sasin. “Today, more than 60% of the electricity bills that every Polish family pays are EU costs for, among other things, CO2 emissions.”

This week, state-owned Tauron – Poland’s biggest supplier of electricity, with over a third of the market – wrote to its customers to inform them that 59% of electricity costs result from EU emissions allowances and a further 8% from EU requirements on renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Commentators have noted, however, that one of the reasons that Poland faces such high emissions costs is that it continues to rely on coal for around 70% of electricity production, by far the highest figure in the EU.

While the current government has accepted the need to move away from coal, and has set targets to achieve this, critics say that it has done so more slowly than it should, continuing to prop up the coal sector.

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