Latest market outlook report predicts that the country will get more than half of its power from hon-hydro renewables by 2030.
Italy derived most of its electricity from thermal power in 2017 with the same contributing to 50.7 percent of its installed capacity. Natural gas alone accounted for 41 percent, according to GlobalData, a data and analytics company.
The company’s latest report ‘Italy Power Market Outlook to 2030, Update 2018 – Market Trends, Regulations, and Competitive Landscape’ reveals that, government policy is oriented towards scrapping coal-based capacity between 2025 and 2030, while renewable energy auctions, to be started by 2020, will help to compensate for this loss.
Chiradeep Chatterjee, Power Analyst at GlobalData, said that renewables are, “Italy’s fastest-growing energy source.” He explained that the 2011 referendum that closed any option for the government to restart nuclear power generation and the increasing new for a secure energy supply are the reasons for the country’s renewable-heavy outlook.
“Installed non-hydro renewable capacity increased from 1.7 GW in 2000 to 34.5 GW in 2017. Italy recorded notable progress with respect to the development of installed solar capacity, which grew from 19 MW in 2000 to around 19.7 GW in 2017. The onshore wind market also grew exponentially, from 364 MW to 9.8 GW, owing to strong policy support from the government in the form of FITs. From 2018 to 2030, renewable installed capacity is expected to grow to 63.4 GW in 2030,” he added.
GlobalData’s report also finds that gas and oil-based capacities are expected to remain stable in the country with some of its oil-based capacity expected to be converted to gas. Coal based capacity is expected to cease beyond 2024 due to the decommissioning of the existing coal based power plants
Italy imports more than 90 percent of its coal requirement from South Africa, Australia, Indonesia, Colombia, and the US. It possesses small deposits of coal reserves, most of which are in South Sardinia. It also imports gas, primarily from Algeria and Russia. Although it possesses economically accessible gas reserves, a declining trend in gas production has been observed since the mid-1990s, caused by national energy policies formulated by the government that do not support gas production.
However, the government is increasing the share of renewable energy sources over concerns over energy security.
Chatterjee concludes, “Thermal power’s share is expected to be overshadowed by non-hydro renewable power, with its share in installed capacity declining to 36.9 percent. The share of non-hydro renewable capacity is expected to increase to 45.8 percent by 2030.”