At the beginning of September Kompania Węglowa informed the authorities about possibility of a big-time scam connected with piles of coal from Piekary mine. The facility itself was sold to Węglokoks in May, but the stocked coal (342,000 Mt) was excluded from the agreement. Now KW discovered, that majority of the coal on that pile is of a very poor quality (much lower than recorded in the papers) and it is not suitable to be used as a fuel, not even in the boilers installed in Polish power plants.

The problem might become a larger scandal if KW will check the rest of the piles. This year energy industry bought major volumes of coal from Kompania Węglowa (because of the KW’s sales policy) and shortage of good quality coal could lead to bigger troubles in winter.

Filing a report to the prosecutor’s office suggests that the whole story has a criminal background, but already some commentators pointed out that the quality of stocked coal is just an effect of KW’s policy introduced by Joanna Strzelec-Łobodzińska, former CEO of Kompania Węglowa. During her reign, all mines were working at full speed, producing as much coal as possible, and the mines directors were rewarded for the production performance (volumes of produced coal), regardless of the coal’s quality or sales results.

If the further KW-inner investigation will show that all the mines have the same quality issues with the coal stocked on the piles, the whole scam-theory will fall and expose the irresponsibility and dilettantism of former Management Boards of the EU largest steam coal producer.