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Public Opinion / Support For New Nuclear Has Increased In Poland, Survey Says

By David Dalton
7 March 2019

7 Mar (NucNet): Sixty-nine percent of residents living near proposed sites for nuclear power plants in Poland support their construction, up from 67% last year, according to a survey by PGE EJ1, the state-owned entity in charge of developing the country’s first nuclear power project.

The survey suggests that support for the construction of a nuclear plant has remained stable since the last survey, but the attitude of residents towards locating a plant near their homes has improved.

More residents who do not support the construction of a nuclear plant in Poland would feel inclined to change their minds provided a plant helps to limit the effects of climate change and boost energy security.

The main reasons for support for new nuclear are new jobs, development opportunities for the site communes and cheaper electricity, PGE EJ1 said. Seventy-eight percent of respondents said Poland needs a nuclear plant because current power generation sources do not meet demand.

Poland launched a national nuclear power programme in 2014 which included the construction of up to 6 GW of capacity by 2035, but a new government has been delaying a final decision on the programme since taking over in 2015. A recent draft energy strategy called for construction of Poland’s first nuclear unit by 2033 and another five or six by 2043.

Government sources have said Poland will be aiming at a possible 6% nuclear share in the early to mid-2030s and a 15-20% nuclear share by 2050, although this would depend on the final decision about the nuclear programme and its financing.

In April 2017, PGE EJ1 began environmental and site selection surveys at two locations – Lubiatowo-Kopalino in the municipality of Choczewo and Żarnowiec in the municipality of Korkowa.

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