ANALYSIS: The CO2 emissions reduction paths in the transport sector in Poland in the context of the European Green Deal

We are pleased to present the results of the latest analysis prepared as part of the LIFE Climate CAKE PL project entitled “The CO2 emissions reduction paths in the transport sector in Poland in the context of the European Green Deal“. The analysis was prepared using  the TR3E transport sector model. This study tries to answer the question of how the charges for CO2 emissions (carbon price) imposed on conventional vehicles and technological progress may affect the balance of emissions from this sector in Poland in the perspective of 2050.



Referring to the assumptions of the European Commission communication entitled “The European Green Deal” where it is required the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the entire European economy in order to achieve climate neutrality in 2050 the role of the transport sector should be emphasized, where emissions from this sector in Poland account for approximately 24% of total CO2 emissions.


The dynamics of historical CO2 emissions from the transport sector in Poland compared to the average of the European Union is substantially different. In Poland, in the years 2005-2017, a significant increase in emissions was observed (by 76%), while in the EU a 3% decrease in emissions was visible in the same period.


In order to analyze the possibilities of reducing emissions in the transport sector in Poland, a ProETSeq scenario was developed which includes charges depending on carbon dioxide emissions which are included in the purchase price of fuels and as well as the ongoing technological progress. It assumes both a decrease in the prices of low-emission vehicles, an improvement in the intensity of emissions compared to that assumed in the baseline scenario and finally the introduction of a tax on CO2 emissions.


Below are the most important conclusions from the analysis:


  • The different dynamics of historical emissions in the transport sector in Poland compared to the European Union will be important in emissions reduction and will undoubtedly affect the pace of these reduction.


  • Baseline scenario (BAU) to be used as a reference for included simulations in this report is consistent with the PRIMES 2016 reference scenario. The average increase in transport activity adopted in BAU at 1.5% y / y translates into an increase of emissions from 61 Mt CO2 in 2020 to 63 Mt CO2 in 2030 and then a drop to 58 Mt CO2 in 2050.


  • The main analytical scenario (ProETSeq) introduces an additional tax depending on the intensity of the fuel consumption of the conventional vehicles and a gradual decline in the price of electric and hybrid vehicles, with the price per ton of CO2 emissions converging up to EUR 350 in 2050.


  • The increase in the operating costs of ICE-powered cars (levy on CO2 emissions) and the decrease in the prices of low-emission vehicles (electric and hybrid) will result in a dynamic increase in the number of electric vehicles in Poland – around 350.000 vehicles per year.


  • The structure of the passenger car fleet in Poland will change: 7% share of electric cars and 5% hybrid cars in 2030 and 54% electric cars and 10% hybrid cars in 2050.


  • Changing consumer preferences regarding the purchase vehicles, as well as an increase in rail transport activity would lead to a decrease in emissions up to 52 Mt CO2 in 2030 and 31 Mt CO2 in 2050. The possibilities of significant emissions reduction by 2030 seem to be quite limited, if only due to the relatively expensive new low-emission vehicles. Hence, reductions of CO2 emissions compared to the level in 2005 are only visible in the year 2050.


  • The development of electromobility increases the total demand for electricity in 2050 by approximately 35 TWh, which would account for approximately 15% of the national electricity demand in that year. (additional CO2 emissions from electricity production would represent 1.3% of emissions from the road transport sector).


  • The freight sector, despite the significant increase of fuel prices caused by emission charges, is still responsible for a significant level of emissions – 25 Mt CO2 in 2030 and 19 Mt CO2 in 2050. Introduction of a fee based on emissions for vehicles with a payload above 3.5 tonnes may reduce the activity (and thus emissions) in this group of vehicles by 6% in 2030 and by 19% in 2050 compared to the baseline scenario – the activity will be replaced by rail transport.


Analysis in polish language: 

  Ścieżki redukcji emisji CO2 w sektorze transportu w Polsce w kontekście „Europejskiego Zielonego Ładu” (2.2 MiB, 149 hits)


Summary in english language

  The CO2 emission reduction paths in the transport sector in Poland in the context of The European Green Deal (1.3 MiB, 63 hits)


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