According to the proposals that are published at the website of the Polish Ministry of the Environment, the legal framework for the activities relating to carbon capture and storage in Poland will be designed by the amendment of the existing Geologic and Mining Law.


The proposal unfortunately does not reveal particulars relating to the form and extent of the required financial security, which are the matters of utmost attention for the bankers, lawyers and insurers interested in CCS.

 


We have some basic proposals for the implementation of CCS Directive in Poland. They are published at the website of the Polish Ministry of the Environment (www.mos.gov.pl) – see: the Guidelines for the draft bill on the amendment of the Geologic and Mining Law and some other laws (further referred to as: “Guidelines”).


According to the Guidelines, the legal framework for the activities relating to carbon capture and storage in Poland will be designed by the amendment of the existing Geologic and Mining Law.

The “competent authority” referred to, in particular, in Article 18 of the CCS Directive (Directive 2009/31/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the geological storage of carbon dioxide and amending Council Directive 85/337/EEC, European Parliament and Council Directives 2000/60/EC, 2001/80/EC, 2004/35/EC, 2006/12/EC, 2008/1/EC and Regulation (EC) No 1013/2006) will be the Ministry of the Environment acting through National Authority for the Underground Storage Sites of Carbon Dioxide (KAPS CO2).


Above mentioned authority will be authorised in Poland to take the responsibility in accordance with the Article 18 of the Directive in case of a closure of a storage site – obviously when all legal requirements for the transfer of responsibility will be met. One of these requirements is that, “a minimum period, to be determined by the competent authority has elapsed. This minimum period shall be no shorter than 20 years, unless the competent authority is convinced that the criterion referred to in point (a) is complied with before the end of that period.”


So, the Directive allows for shorter than 20 years “standstill period” after the closure of the storage site – this is when, “all available evidence indicates that the stored CO2 will be completely and permanently contained.”

 

But the Guidelines issued by the Polish Ministry of the Environment does not envisage for the shortening of this period.

The National Fund for the Nature Conservation and Water Management will collect financial contributions paid by the operators of a CO2 storage sites as regards financial security.


The financial security will consist of two components:


1) refundable – covering the costs of the closure of the storage site, the anticipated cost of monitoring for a period of 20 years, and costs of remedial actions (if need be) before the transfer of responsibility and


2) non–refundable – covering at least the anticipated cost of monitoring for a period of 30 years after the transfer of responsibility and all other costs borne by the KAPS CO2 after the transfer of responsibility to ensure that the CO2 is completely and permanently contained in

geological storage sites (in particular costs of remedial actions and other actions necessary in case the operator does not fulfill obligations laid down in the permit.


According to the Article 39 par. 1 of the CCS Directive Member States are obliged to bring into force the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with Directive by 25 June 2011.