Towards a climate neutral EU:
efficient allocation of EU funds

Cold thermal baths in Lidzbark Warmiński

Organisation: Fundacja Instytut na rzecz Ekorozwoju Website: Added: August 30, 2023
Project start date: January 25, 2011
Project end date: January 07, 2016


Termy Warmińskie is an example of an investment that from the very beginning aroused controversy and met with numerous criticisms. The basic objection to the legitimacy of the investment appeared already at the design stage and concerned too low water temperature. From the research in 2011 preceding the construction of the thermal baths, it turned out that the water extracted to the surface may turn out to be too cold (it has a temperature of about 21 degrees Celsius), and thus will require heating. Despite the lack of confirmation of appropriate geothermal conditions, the local authorities decided to implement the investment, the total cost of which is estimated at over PLN 100 million (over EUR 21 million at the average euro exchange rate in 2022). Due to numerous allegations against the profitability of this investment, the case of Termy Warmińskie was even investigated by the Polish Prosecutor's Office in terms of abuse of social trust by councillors and authorities of the Lidzbark poviat, who by adopting a resolution regarding the construction of a swimming pool and hotel complex could knowingly expose the local government to losses. Despite the controversy, Termy Warmińskie received another funding in 2018 from the Regional Operational Program of the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship for 2014-2020. The thermal baths were also loud in 2013, when the German weekly "Der Spiegel" recognized the Warmian investment as one of the examples of wasting money from the European Union. The interest of the Polish media in the thermal baths returned in 2022 due to information about the planned sale of the facility, owned by the Lidzbark County and the city of Lidzbark Warmiński. After the failure of the first attempt, in 2023 the councilors of the Lidzbark district decided to put the object up for sale again – this time for at least PLN 41.3 million (over EUR 8,8 million at the average euro exchange rate in 2022).

Financial data

The cost of the "Termy Warmińskie" investment is PLN 93,354,595.02 (approximately EUR 20,6 million), of which 85% are EU funds: PLN 67,772,874.34 (approximately EUR 17,5 million) from Regional Operational Programme of Warmińsko-Mazurskie Voivodship 2007 - 2013, action 2.1. Increasing tourism potential (European Regional Development Fund)


Investments using geothermal water deposits should be preceded by detailed studies justifying their location and thorough analyses of the economic justification for the implementation of a given project.

Information sources,tygodnik-der-spiegel-wysmiewa-marnowanie-pieniedzy-na-termy-ze-zbyt-zimna-woda-winny-baron-po-jacek-protas,Saga-z-Termami-Warminskimi-trwa-Radni-podali-nowa-cene-za-obiekt.html

Other info

European Climate Initiative (EUKI)
This project is part of the European Climate Initiative (EUKI). EUKI is a project financing instrument by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK). The EUKI competition for project ideas is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. It is the overarching goal of the EUKI to foster climate cooperation within the European Union (EU) in order to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.