Prospects

When reviewing and summing-up achievements of the sector we must emphasise the most valuable asset of Polish electrical power engineering – the people. As mentioned before, after the occupation the electrical power industry suffered from great personnel shortages both in terms of numbers and competence. The more intensive power engineering's development was the more severe the shortages were. Among the employed there were individuals with no qualifications, experience and education, often illiterate. 

 

Courses and training (frequently including reading and writing classes to begin with) were started, and a vocational educational system was established. Schools for working adults and young people were created almost in each power distribution company, power plant or installation and construction company. 

 

Already employed school graduates were sent to power industry training centres to attend specialist courses. Development of higher education system enabled the employed to undertake part-time or extramural studies. Between 1945 and 1980 particular attention was given to the education of engineering and technical staff. Legal, organisational and economic matters were focused after 1980. Patterns of good, solid work continued in Polish electrical power engineering became the standard of order and discipline. 

 

Power industry personnel consists of a close and reciprocally kind team of people and is the subject of respect or even envy in other sectors. The situation can be put down to the work performed by thousands of people, beginning from assembly workers and finishing with ministers. The power industry is ruled by the principles of work and behaviour. Family traditions in the sector stretch back over 2 or 3 generations, while a considerable part of the staff often start and end their professional career in the same power plant or distribution company. Employees with nearly half-a-century's experience in power engineering are not a rarity here. The high level of qualifications among the engineering-technical as well as economic-legal personnel made it possible to adapt Polish electrical power engineering to the requirements and Directives of the European Union. Polish electric power system was included in the UCTE system in 1995. 

 

The electric energy market was established and the program for development of Polish power engineering was formulated. It allows for the growth of the Polish economy until 2030 and refers to the European Directives (defined as 3x20) that provide for:

• lowering emissions by 20%;

• inclusion of renewable sources of Energy in the energy balance at the level of 20%;

• reduction of energy consumption by 20%.

 

Today, it is hard to specify at least one domain of life where functioning without the use of electric energy is possible. Deputy Majewski's words mentioned in this book when referring to the act passed on March 21, 1922 turned out to be prophetic. The 20th century was the age of electricity. We must not forget though, that electric energy transport is increasingly expensive. We often waste energy, using it in an irrational way.

 

Technological advancement allows for the production and efficient use of energysaving devices. The changes in energy consumption occurring recently in Poland had a positive character. Our economy was one of the most energy-consuming for many years. We used twice as much electricity as other countries in order to produce 1 dollar of the national product. Economic changes that occurred in Poland in the 1990's resulted in such modifications as liquidation or limitation in energy-consuming industries and bringing household appliances as well as industrial technologies into compliance with world energy consumption standards. Current energy consumption of the Polish economy is about 10% higher than in other countries. A considerable amount of work is particularly needed in the electric power engineering itself: grid losses during transportation and distribution significantly exceed the network indicators, just as in the case of energy consumption answering power stations internal load. What matters is the fact that we know what to do and I strongly believe that we will achieve great success in this field in the future. Electric (and other types of) energy must be used in a rational way, since it is an asset of great value which is to become exhausted. 

 

Summing up the development of Polish electrical power engineering it must be stated that in spite of the partitions, the First and the Second World Wars, German occupation and other adverse circumstances, a powerful energy industry was built in Poland – thousands of kilometres of lines, hundreds of thousands of transformer stations and substations, tens of modern power and thermal-electric power plants. We have adapted our electric energy industry to the European Union requirements and world standards. We also have a clearly defined development plan for the years to come. We have got the personnel, infrastructure and our own energy raw materials. We are aware of the role and tasks the sector is supposed to fulfil in the country's economic life and we meet public expectations. As power engineers we find great satisfaction when considering what we have achieved for the benefit of the nation, putting Stanisław Staszic's words ”To be of service for the nation” in practice.