PGE has omitted its Gubin lignite mine project from its 2019 financial report, signalling that it has abandoned the project. The controversial proposed mine was intended to fuel a new 3000 MW coal power plant, and its cancellation means that one billion tonnes of lignite will remain in the ground. Gubin is one of a series of losing bets for PGE, and with debts of EUR 2.5 billion to its name, it is clear the company can afford few more.
The report shows a 17 percent fall in power generation from lignite and an 11 percent drop from hard coal compared to 2018. PGE has never posted such stark figures, and the report paints a bleak future for a company that saw costs of EUAs almost double in 2019 (EUR 660 million). PGE is performing poorly compared with other European electric utilities precisely because it has failed to invest heavily in renewables. Currently over 90 percent of its electricity is generated from lignite and hard coal. If PGE doesn’t abandon coal soon, it will have nowhere left to turn.