To build an offshore wind farm an investor must acquire a number of permits. This may last from 3 to as much as 7 years. The required decisions include:
- A permission to build and operate artificial islands, structures and facilities in Polish maritime areas – i.e. the so-called location decision, issued by the Minister for Infrastructure upon application of the investor for a site selected by him; after adoption of a local spatial development plan for maritime areas – by Director of the relevant Maritime Office.
- Decision on environmental determinants – issued by the Regional Environmental Protection Directorate.
- Grid connection conditions issued by the transmission system operator.
- Building permit – issued by the Province Governor.
The procedure for the acquisition of the location decision is laid down in the Act on maritime areas of the Republic of Poland and maritime administration dated 21 March 1991. An amendment thereto (Journal of Laws 2011.134.778) allowed for implementation of offshore investments in Polish maritime areas by adapting provisions regulating the issuance of permissions to build and operate artificial islands, structures and facilities to the determinants of the investment process in this sector of the economy. The amendment extends the validity period of the permission from 5 to 30 years, with an option to extend it by further 20 years.
The Act bans construction and operation of wind farms in internal maritime waters and the territorial sea.
Regardless of the location of an investment, an authority charges a fee for the issuance of the permission in the amount equivalent to 300 calculation units. If the investment is located within the exclusive economic zone, an additional fee in the amount of 1% of value of the planned project is charged. The investor shall pay the additional fee as follows:
- 10% of the full amount of the fee within 90 days from the day when the decision became final.
- 30% of the full amount of the fee within 30 days from the day, when the building permit for the project became final, or, when the building permit is not required, within 30 days from the day when the construction of the project has started.
- 30% of the full amount of the fee within 30 days from the day, when operation of the investment has started.
- 30% of the full amount after 3 years from the date of payment referred to in (3).