Ambassador Mark Brzezinski’s Interview with TVN at AMCHAM Energy Conference

6 October 2022

Sebastian Napieraj, TVN: Mr. Ambassador we are meeting during the energy day conference, which, of course, is organized by American Chamber of Commerce. (…) what are the possible solutions?

Ambassador Brzezinski: Private companies want to respond to the energy crisis.  There is a somewhat chaotic situation as it pertains to energy here in Poland, and we are working all together: American government, Polish government, American companies, Polish companies to come up with the best alignment.  The fact of the matter is that Poland has to make energy decisions.  We’ve seen how Russia weaponizes energy.  We don’t want that, Sebastian, for our children and their children and their futures. We need energy independence in this country. And what’s great is that we live in a moment where we have the technology to provide that: whether through renewable energy, through LNG, through nuclear.  We are currently engaged in an intensive conversation to develop an American Polish alignment on nuclear energy that could power this country for the next 100 years.

Sebastian Napieraj, TVN: You mentioned nuclear power. What are the possibilities right now?

Ambassador Brzezinski: There’s many forms of nuclear technology. In particular, there is a proposal by the two brand-name elite American companies, Westinghouse and Bechtel to construct six large nuclear power plants in Poland.  That would address the power needs of where this country wants to go economically. Poland needs to be able to power itself, not just this year, but every year.   Energy is part and parcel of security. Security through military alone is not an option. You need a secure energy future. We the Americans to want to partner with you on that.   The American Polish relationship is one of those special friendships that exist in the world.  For there to be an energy dimension to it would make so much sense.  It would be to mesh together through energy technology.  The US government – if we can get this Westinghouse / Bechtel deal done – has proposed placing our US Department of Energy, Regional Center of Excellence for Nuclear Energy and Clean Energy in Poland. It’s a remarkable and unique opportunity, for the US Government to place overseas one of our Centers of Excellence.

Sebastian Napieraj, TVN: As you mentioned before, it is related to security. So I want to stick to security, and ask you about the nuclear readiness program.  As far as we know, President Duda presented our readiness to be part of this program.  What is your comment?

Ambassador Brzezinski: Poland, because of its history, in engineering, in physics, in technology in great science has so much to offer in terms of nuclear technology development, and is poised to be a regional leader in nuclear power. That’s the opportunity for the next generation in Poland.  To seize an opportunity that great science knows no borders and the Poles could be poised to be a focal point of innovation (…)

Sebastian Napieraj, TVN: Once again, I want to ask you about nuclear sharing what’s your answer about it?

Ambassador Brzezinski: Right. The nuclear sharing program in terms of civil nuclear energy is something that we’re trying to drive forward very proactively right now.

Sebastian Napieraj, TVN: You always underline the fact that Polish and American bonds are stronger than ever before. And you know that for Poles our safety, the safety of our country is absolutely crucial.

Ambassador Brzezinski: Yeah, as a Polish American, the safety and security of Poland has been embedded in my DNA since I was literally born to a Polish-American father. So security is something, Sebastian, I well understand in terms of Poland, and I have been very much an advocate of the military-to-military combination between America and Poland. But that alone is not the full picture of security. Energy has to be part of that security picture as well, which is why we are really trying to impress on the Poles that we have a deal that could mesh our countries together in terms of powering this country for the future, and innovating on nuclear technology for well into the future.