“The [European] Commission and the Polish regulator have received a request from a market participant regarding the situation when transmission capacity from the Polish side to zero during night hours,” the Lithuanian National Commission for Energy Control and Prices wrote in an email to Reuters.
Legal experts believe that the restrictions could be a breach of the EU’s market rules, and they have also become a sore spot in the Polish eurosceptic government‘s standoff with the European Commission.
The investigation was initiated by Estonia state-owned power group Eesti Energia after it submitted a request in April. “The situation is definitely problematic as the Polish TSO (transmission system operator) clearly is not acting in accordance with its previously made statements and officially submitted information,” Hando Sutter, the company’s chief executive, wrote to Reuters in an email.
PSE, on the other hand, says that the nighttime limits are necessary to prevent surges of power when it is needed least and to protect its coal power plants, which provide more than 80% of the country’s power, from cheaper electricity.
“The day and night fluctuations, which could be caused by the excess of electricity coming from the Baltic states to Poland, are a threat to our power stations…,” Piotr Naimski, a senior government official in charge of energy infrastructure, told Reuters.