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Energy Poland

Poland Hydrogen Strategy

Hydrogen is regarded as the future of transport and automotive fuels, but its current use is still marginal. Hydrogen powered cars have been developed but currently there are only a few thousand units in use. Polish company, Ampere Life, is developing a hydrogen powered vehicle, as well as an automated method of refueling the car.

Poland could export green hydrogen to other countries, using an already existing infrastructure - e.g. the Yamal pipeline. Analysts from the Polish Economic Institute (PIE) have indicated that Poland could become a very competitive producer of green hydrogen over the next 3 decade. Favorable economic conditions would allow Poland to produce hydrogen from onshore wind energy. The average energy cost would be EUR 2.33 to 3 per kilogram of hydrogen and EUR 70-92 per one megawatt hour (MWh).

The Polish hydrogen agreement adopted in October 2021 has 160 signatories - these are institutions, business entities (private and state), universities, foreign companies (including Toyota, Alstom, Siemens). This is the first agreement of this kind in Europe and will be a key instrument for the Polish Hydrogen Strategy.

In November 2021, the government adopted the Polish Hydrogen Strategy, which defines the action plan in the area of hydrogen technologies. At the end of this year, a law called the Constitution for Hydrogen is to be submitted to the Parliament. Companies welcome the adoption of the Polish Hydrogen Strategy, and the formal regulations necessary to develop hydrogen production.

Central & Eastern Europe’ s largest energy company, PKN Orlen, recently presented its Hydrogen Strategy through 2030. According to the document, the company intends to spend $1.7 billion to develop low and zero-emission hydrogen technologies. 

Orlen, within the framework of Hydrogen Eagle project, plans to build 9 new hydrogen hubs, including 5 in Poland, 3 in Czech Republic and one in Slovakia. Production of low and zero-emission hydrogen will take place on the basis of renewable energy sources and municipal waste processing technology. According to Orlen, Hydrogen Strategy will be implemented in four key areas: mobility, refining and petrochemicals, research and development as well as industry and energy. By 2030, ten hydrogen hubs will be created in Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, and drivers of hydrogen powered vehicles will have access to a network of more than 100 hydrogen filling stations. 

Polish bus producer, Solaris, is producing hydrogen buses at their factory in west-central Poland. Though not currently on the road in Poland, Solaris Urbino 12 hydrogen vehicles are in use in German and in the Netherlands.  Hydrogen buses are zero emission and can be refueled in a few minutes, a significant advantage over electric buses.

Many rail routes in Europe are still not electrified, and hydrogen locomotives may be more cost effective than constructing overhead electric lines.  Since 2018, two hydrogen trains have been operating in Germany, and 41 additional trains have been ordered. The Italian railway has ordered 14, and Poland has expressed interest in procuring hydrogen trains.

Electric cars are becoming more commonplace in European cities and according to a report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, by 2027, electric cars and vans will be cheaper to produce than similar fossil fuel-powered vehicles.  In 2030 emission regulations will be in place, essentially forcing all cars to be hybrid. In 2035, it will not be possible to sell carbon dioxide-emitting cars in the European Union at all.

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