Poland to offer support for PGE, Orsted, RWE offshore projects

WARSAW, April 8 (Reuters) - Poland has agreed to offer energy price support to offshore wind projects being developed by PGE, Denmark’s Orsted and Germany’s RWE as the coal-reliant country seeks cleaner energy sources.

Warsaw adopted a long-awaited offshore wind law earlier this year and aims to develop 8 to 11 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind capacity by 2040.

Under the legislation the regulator by the end of June aims to approve up to 5.9 GW of projects for contracts for difference (CfD), with guarantee a stable revenue stream for operators.

After June subsidies for renewable power sources can only be granted via an auction process, according to a European Union directive.

On Wednesday Poland’s energy regulator approved two offshore wind farm projects developed jointly by PGE and Orsted totalling at 2.5 GW in capacity which will be able to supply electricity for 4 million households, as well as a 350 MW project by RWE.

“Granting the right to a contract for difference for Baltica 2 and 3 is a milestone for Polish offshore wind energy,” Orsted Offshore’s Rasmus Errboe said in a statement.

A price cap for electricity generated by offshore wind farms, which would be the basis for calculating and covering investors’ potential losses, has been set at 319.60 złotys/MWh.

The contracts for difference will also require approval by the European Commission.

Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko; editing by Jason Neely