Italian local govts must identify suitable areas for renewables projects, draft decree says

By Thomson Reuters May 30, 2024 | 12:08 PM

ROME/MILAN (Reuters) – The Italian government will order regional authorities to identify suitable areas for renewable energy projects within six months, a draft decree showed on Thursday, in a long-awaited regulation to speed up green energy development.

The decree sets annual targets for each Italian region in order to add 80 gigawatt (GW) in renewable power capacity by 2030 to what was in place at the end of 2020.

Under the draft decree, Sicily will have to add nearly 10.5 GW of renewable power capacity by the end of the decade, the most among all Italian regions.

It will be followed by the northern region of Lombardy, home to Italy’s financial capital Milan, with a planned additional capacity of 8.8 GW by 2030.

Once the final decree is published, regions will have six months to identify suitable areas.

The new rules grant a fast-track permit process for projects that will be located in areas identified but also confirm a ban on installing solar panels on agricultural land, a move that has been harshly criticised by the Italian power industry.

The energy ministry together with national energy bodies GSE and RSE will monitor to see that annual targets set for each region are met, the decree said, adding that the government could act if a local government fails to pursue its annual goal.

(Reporting by Francesca Landini and Giuseppe Fonte; Editing by Susan Fenton)