Last updated on: 2020-10-16

News

22.07.2020

Green transition in the ZE PAK SA Group

 

Zespół Elektrowni Pątnów – Adamów – Konin SA (ZE PAK Group) has been an essential link in the National Power System for decades. It has an important impact on the industrial functioning of the Konin subregion and on the local labour market. The Company has always operated in accordance with its mission, which states that "the goal of ZE PAK SA is ecologically clean electricity and heat production, in a manner that is safe for people and the environment".

  

In 2018, ZE PAK SA, without hesitation, began the energy transition of Eastern Greater Poland, recognizing that it was time to change the orientation in the sphere of the energy impact on the climate.

 

Consequently, on April 3, 2019, an Agreement was signed in Konin for a just energy transition of Eastern Greater Poland. The participants of the Agreement were the representatives of the Greater Poland Province Management Board, the ZE PAK SA Management Board, as well as the delegates of the city of Konin and municipalities cooperating with the ZE PAK Capital Group.

 

The Agreement was aimed at looking for opportunities for the development of the power sector based on renewable energy sources, transition to a low- or zero-carbon economy, which is an alternative to coal. In order to use the assets in the Company's resources, a concept and schedule for the implementation of investments have been developed, which – using the support for mining regions under the Coal Platform – will give an impulse to the development of the ZE PAK Group in new areas of activity for the coming years. These include the construction of photovoltaic and wind farms in the reclaimed post-mining areas of the Group, adaptation of the coal system for biomass combustion, erection of a heat storage for heating the city of Konin, construction of an energy storage for the needs of RES in the area of the Group and the development of infrastructure for the production, storage and distribution of hydrogen.

 

As part of the energy transition process, the activities in the ZE PAK SA Capital Group (the Group) focus on:

  • Decommissioning of the existing coal-fired units and converting some of them into units operating on the basis of renewable fuels (RES).
  • Systematic reclamation of post-mining areas, among others, towards the generation of electricity from RES.
  • Meeting the tightening emission standards.

 

The Group's energy transition towards renewable energy sources

 

ZE PAK SA is gradually decommissioning the power units operating in its power plants that function based on lignite. In recent years, we have shut down:

 

  • The Adamów Power Plant (600 MW: 5 coal-fired units with a capacity of 120 MW each); the last unit was shut down on January 1, 2018.
  • The Pątnów I Power Plant (200 MW: 1 coal-fired unit with a capacity of 200 MW - unit no. "4"); shut-down at the end of 2019.
  • The Pątnów I Power Plant (400 MW: 2 coal-fired units with a capacity of 200 MW - units no. "3" and "6"); shut-down in mid-2020.
  • The Konin Power Plant (93 MW: 2 steam turbine generator sets operating in the manifold system with coal boilers); shut-down in mid-2020.

 

In recent years, in the ZE PAK SA Capital Group, we have deactivated power equipment with a capacity of 1293 MW. In the Pątnów I – the largest power plant in the Group – there are only 3 coal-fired units left out of the 6 originally available ones.

 

We would also like to inform you that according to the submitted application for the amendment of the integrated permit for the Pątnów I and Konin Power Plants, the Group plans to decommission the remaining coal-fired units, i.e.:

 

  • The Konin Power Plant (2 boilers operating in the manifold system with a total thermal capacity of 222 MW); definitive shut-down at the end of 2022, which is related to the maintenance of the reserve heat supply to the city of Konin until the second biomass unit is put into operation, which will be adapted to emergency cooperation with the heat turbine.
  • The Pątnów Power Plant (644 MW: 2 coal-fired units with a capacity of 222 MW and one with a capacity of 200 MW – units Nos. "1", "2" and "5"); planned shut-down at the end of 2030.

 

The coal units are being replaced with units generating energy from renewable sources:

 

  • In the Konin Power Plant (biomass unit No. 6 with a capacity of 50 MW, operating based on the K12 boiler); it has been in operation since mid-2012.
  • In the Konin Power Plant (biomass unit No. 5 with a capacity of 50 MW, operating based on the upgraded K7 boiler); scheduled commissioning on September 30, 2021.

 

In the coming years, the ZE PAK Group also plans to launch further renewable energy systems based on solar and wind energy, and hydrogen production.

 

 

In mid-2021, the Group plans to commission a photovoltaic farm with a nominal capacity of 70 MWp. The investment is located in the areas of villages: Janiszew and Koźmin, in the municipality of Brudzew. The project site is located in the eastern part of the Brudzew municipality within the borders of the Turek district. The investment area is a reclaimed terrain after opencast lignite mining operations carried out by PAK Kopalnia Węgla Brunatnego Adamów S.A. - "Koźmin" open-pit mine. The net area for the investment is 100.7 ha. The construction of the farm is based on photovoltaic modules with a capacity of 440 W, inverters with a capacity of 185 kW and 20/0.4 kV transformers, as well as a power output transformer of 110/20/20/kV (63,5/31,5/31,5 MVA).

 

In April 2020, Zespół Elektrowni Pątnów-Adamów-Konin S.A. signed a contract with Hydrogenics Europe N.V. regarding the purchase of a HyLYZER 1000-30 electrolyser for hydrogen production along with the auxiliary equipment, i.e. a 350 bar compressor station (2x750 m3) and a station for filling mobile storage systems. Electricity produced in the generating units of the Konin Power Plant operating based on biomass (RES) will be used for the electrolysis process. The project, which is already being implemented, applies PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) technology, and it means that the hydrogen will be produced without harmful by-products. In the first stage of the construction of the hydrogen plant, the demand for electricity will be 2.5 MW, and after installing the second electrolyser, the demand will increase to 5 MW and will enable the production of 2 tons of hydrogen per day. The hydrogen amount produced by one electrolyser will allow the operation of about 50 buses a day, each of which will travel about 250 km a day.

 

Reclamation

 

 

The reclamation work is systematically carried out in the Capital Group in areas where the operation of lignite open pits has ended. In the last ten years, the Group has reclaimed approximately 1,500 hectares of post-mining land for the amount of approximately PLN 56 million. As a result of the reclamation work, the following are created:

  • attractive water reservoirs intended for recreational purposes, but also with anti-flood and retention functions,
  • agricultural land sold to local farmers,
  • forest areas transferred to the State Forests,
  • areas intended for recreation to be used by the local government,
  • areas designated for investments related to the production of electricity from renewable energy sources.

The tables below present the number of reclaimed hectares in the Group in the last 10 years, along with the reclamation directions, and the costs of reclamation within 2010 - June 30, 2020.

 

 

 

Air protection

 

The reduction of the generation potential referred to above has translated into a decrease in both electricity production from lignite and a reduction in CO2, SO2, NOx and dust emissions over the last few years.

 

 

The 493 MW coal capacity withdrawn on June 30, 2020 corresponded to 1,442,000 tons of CO2 emissions in 2019, which means that the emissions should decrease by this amount in the following years.

 

 

 

 

Since July 1, 2020, the ZE PAK SA Group (Elektrownia Pątnów and Elektrownia Konin) has been subjected to stricter emission standards resulting from Directive 2010/75/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council, commonly known as IED. 

 

Due to the tightening of emission standards, the levels of permissible emissions of pollutants into the air have been reduced several times in the Pątnów I Power Plant. Before the tightening of emission requirements, the Pątnów I Power Plant not only met the applicable standards, but also emitted much less pollutants than allowed.

 

 

The reduction of both the carbon footprint and the emission of other substances is consistent with the declarations made as a response of the Company to the initiative of the main shareholder of ZE PAK SA, Mr Zygmunt Solorz, called the "Clean Poland Program".