Italy approves 'green transition' decree to boost renewable power

AFP/The Local
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Italy approves 'green transition' decree to boost renewable power
Wind turbines in Candela, Puglia. (Photo by Vincenzo PINTO / AFP)

Italy's cabinet on Monday adopted a decree on renewables and energy security, which ministers said would cut red tape and unlock investments of 27.4 billion euros.


"We want to unlock the great potential of our country, to make it a reference point on renewables," Ecological Transition Minister Gilberto Pichetto said in a statement.

"We want to accelerate the development of renewables towards the 2030 objectives," he said.

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The plan was originally set to be announced in October, but stalled for months amid disagreements within the ruling coalition government.

The decree comes just days ahead of a pivotal UN climate summit in Dubai on preventing the planet's climate from tipping unstoppably out of control.

To keep global warming at an average of 1.5C above pre-industrial temperatures, greenhouse gas emissions must drop 43 percent by 2030 from 2019 levels, according to the UN's climate body.

The text adopted on Monday will "push regions to build renewable energy infrastructure" and includes incentives for some 3,800 energy-intensive
businesses - such as those in the glass and textile industries - to install renewable energy sources.

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The decree would allow Italy to speed up the construction and operation of onshore LNG terminal projects, which Pichetto said was "non-deferrable and urgent".

Energy giant Enel is building a terminal in Porto Empedocle, while Iren and Sorgenia plan to built one in Gioia Tauro.

These plans, like the new floating regasification unit in Piombino, Tuscany, have faced heavy opposition from local residents. Critics say new gas infrastructure is a waste of resources and undermines decarbonisation policies.


A liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker at the port of Piombino, Tuscany. (Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP)


The government's plan includes 350 million euros per year until 2032 to fund projects aimed at overcoming local opposition to the installation of renewable power plants.

Rome also wants to select "state-owned maritime areas" at two ports in southern Italy that will be devoted to new off-shore wind projects.

The decree text also confirmed that plans for all energy customers in Italy to move to private sector contracts from January would go ahead, as a system of state-regulated prices would not be extended in 2024 as ministers had discussed.

Italy's state-regulated energy market is being phased out under Italy's commitments to Europe to boost competition under the post-Covid recovery plan.



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