The future of employees of Tauron's coal units. The company's president promises jobs for the crews of the shutdown units

Luc Williams

In an interview with PAP, the head of Tauron referred to the question about dates of completion of operation of the company's coal-fired power plants among others in context EU regulations assuming that it will happen in 2050 decarbonization of European industry. Lot emphasized that the European Union's goals are energy independence and decarbonization; in this context, Tauron faces a huge challenge – by 2050, 100 percent energy consumed by customers is to come from renewable sources and nuclear energy.

Lot: Decarbonization in Poland is already underway

“Process energy transformation in Poland it is already underway. The national power system shows a significant increase in installed renewable energy capacity. From the viewpoint of energy security country, it is crucial to maintain available sources that will guarantee security of electricity supply” – noted the president.

Coal-fired power plants are still needed

He reminded me that it would take some time launch of nuclear power plants units that stabilize the system and ensure its safety are coal blocks. They ensure stability of supply during periods of lack of photovoltaic generation, occurring during morning and evening demand peaks. As available energy sources, they also ensure continuity of supply in the event of fluctuations or lack of generation from wind sources.

Simultaneously energy produced from renewable energy sources has priority in the network, so it displaces coal units from the system, especially smaller and older ones, which no longer work in its base, but only as supplementary units.

The paradox of coal blocks: necessary but expensive

When asked about the paradox in which carbon blocks are neededto guarantee security of supplyand on the other hand, there is no one to cover the costs of their operation, the head of Tauron stated that in the coming years, available coal capacity will be necessary in the system to guarantee the reliability of electricity supplies during low generation from renewable energy sources.

“Currently, the basic role of 150 or 200 MW class coal units is not continuous operation, but provision of readiness for work so that when there is a lack of renewable energy generation, we can launch and guarantee it covering current energy demand electric. In recent years, there has been a clear change in the way these units are operated. With such characteristics of work, we have no chance of covering the costs they generate. We have support from the Capacity Market until the end of 2025, but we don't know yet what awaits us next,” he noted.

Support for coal blocks extended until 2028.

Referring to the issue of the future of coal block employees, Lot recalled that in December last year the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council reached an agreement on the reform of the electricity market. The European Union agreed to extension of support for coal blocks until 2028.on certain terms.

“We are seeking to quickly conduct supplementary auctions on the Capacity Market for 2026-2028, as this will help cover the fixed costs of the units and, consequently, will allow us to plan the further operation of these units. We are also trying to develop dedicated national mechanisms other than the Capacity Market to finance the maintenance of these units,” said the head of Tauron.

What next for coal block workers?

“Although no binding decisions have been made yet, we are analyzing various scenarios, including the one in which our 150 and 200 MW class coal units will be deemed unnecessary at the end of 2025. We must prepare for all eventualities, because our absolute priority is ensuring life stability for our employees“- he declared.

“If it is necessary to shut down generating units, we will provide jobs for employees of these units. First of all, we will try to relocate the staff within the company, and if this is not possible, we will make suggestions possibility of relocation within the Tauron Group” – assured Lot. He added that if retraining or further training is needed, those interested will be included in an internal development program.

“I want to emphasize once again – we strive to ensure that every employee has the opportunity to work at Tauron,” repeated the head of the concern.

Social protection program for Tauron employees

Regarding the question whether employees of Tauron Wytwarzanie will be able to benefit from government social protection program for employees of the electricity sector and the lignite mining industry Lot noted that “binding decisions specifying the dates of block shutdowns have not been made yet.” “And this is the basic condition for employees of a given enterprise to be able to benefit from the protection packages provided for by the Act: energy leave and one-time check-in” – paid attention.

He pointed out that the energy holiday will apply to people who: there are no pension rights, and who were employed in the company on the day the Act entered into force, i.e. September 14 last year. Additionally, the legislator specified catalog of positions from which it will be possible to take such leave. Another condition is that the use of leave must allow for acquiring the right to a retirement pension and entering it immediately after its completion. The benefit will be granted for a maximum of four years.

Scenarios for the future of generating units and their employees

“Currently, various variants of operation of the generating units are being analyzed. Once you have made a decision on this, you will be able to plan target employment level and identify the number of employees who could benefit from the packages provided for by the Act and the number of people who are willing to work in other branches or companies of the group,” he said.

At the same time he reminded that Minister of State Assets May 10 this year appointed Team for the separation of coal assets from State Treasury energy companies, which cooperates with the management boards of these concerns. “Analysis of the conditions for the separation of coal assets from companies is currently being carried out, assumptions are being developed, directions and methods of carrying out the separation are being determined,” Lot said.

Tauron's strategic goal: transformation towards green energy

He emphasized that Tauron's strategy clearly indicates: transformation towards green energy and customer orientation. He noted that the company's core are 6 million customers connected to its distribution network and purchasing electricity from it.

“The transformation of the Tauron Group is not only the development of renewable energy sources, but also the expansion of the distribution network, energy storage facilities, offers for customers and decarbonization of district heating. The possibility of obtaining attractive financing for the implementation of these planned projects is closely related to the reduction of the carbon footprint,” noted the president.

Preparations for the process of separation of coal assets

“We hope that directional decisions will be made relatively quickly, then a detailed plan for the process of separating coal assets will be prepared, preliminary documents will be signed this year, and the entire process will be finalized in 2025. We are operationally and organizationally prepared to carry out this process.” – declared Grzegorz Lot.



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