Does Polish legislation prompt rapid construction of nuclear power plants?

Recently, we have been hearing about plans to build nuclear power plants in Poland. People who deal with investment projects in the field of energy on a daily basis have doubts and ask questions whether these ambitious plans can be met, the Polish legal system not being ready for them. Such fears are not unfounded, since the lack of appropriate legal provisions, or their imperfection, has so far been seen as one of the main inhibitors of energy projects.

Investments in the energy industry are highly time- and cost-intensive, which is why decisions involving financial capital are preceded by a detailed regulatory analysis.

Examining the current provisions of the Energy Law and other laws necessary in the investment process leads to the conclusion that a process of adapting the law to the needs of announced investment projects in the area of nuclear energy has been initiated in Poland, however, it is still difficult to speak of systemic solutions. An example of such a situation is the Act of 9 March 2023 amending the Act on the preparation and implementation of investment projects in nuclear power facilities and accompanying investments and certain other acts, which entered into force on 13 April 2023. The amendment covers the Nuclear Law and the Act on Providing Information on the Environment and its Protection (…). The provisions introduced are very important, as they interfere in one of the most significant areas of energy projects – the construction process. However, these provisions are only a part of the postulated provisions and, moreover, do not seem to take into account the difference between large-scale projects and those of small-scale nuclear power plants, in line with the concept of ‘distributed energy’.

So there is a paucity of necessary legislation and a huge amount of uncertainty. As a result, one gets the impression that in principle we have a green light for investment projects in nuclear power, but that it has not been lit on all the necessary tracks leading to systemic solutions.

So where is this train going?


Dariusz Hura

Partner, Attorney at Law

Dariusz Hura