Italy


February 2012 update

Art. 65 of Decree n. 1 of 24th of January 2012 “Disposizioni urgenti per la concorrenza, lo sviluppo delle infrastrutture e la competitività” (Urgent measures for competition, development of infrastructures and competitiveness) modified (once more) the rules concerning the access to the incentives for ground mounted systems in agricultural lands that were recently  (re)defined by Decree n. 28 of 3 March 2011.
Decree 28/2011 – previous framework

Under Art. 10.4 of Decree 28/2001 the following limitations were imposed to ground mounted systems in agricultural land:
o    systems of more than 1 MWp NOT allowed
o    the system  cannot cover a surface of more than 10% of the slave area
o    respect of the minimum distance of 2km between systems built on lands belonging to the same owner

Art. 10.6 provide exceptions on the application of the limitations for:
o    systems having obtained all permissions within the 29th of March 2011 or
o    systems for which the application for the permits have been submitted within the 1st of January 2011


According to Art. 10.5 the limitations do not apply on abandoned lands (at least 5 years)

Decree 1/2012 – new framework
     Decree 1/2012 blocks the access to the incentives for all ground mounted systems in agricultural lands except for:
o    systems having obtained all permissions within the 23rd of March 2012
o    systems for which the application for the permits have been submitted within the 23rd of March 2012


On condition that the same systems respect the provisions set under Art. 10.4 (less than 1 MWp and maximum 10% of the slave land) and the system starts operations within 1 year from the entering into force of the Decree and Art. 10.5.


Amendments to Art. 65 have been submitted by Assosolare, in particular in order to preserve the rights and the investments of  those operators falling in the exemption cases as defined by Art. 10.6 of Decree 28/2011 for which the retroactive effects of the new regulation are causing problems.

July 2011 update

  • Legislative Decree of 3 march 2011 n. 28 has defined a new framework for the RES sector in Italy, including PV.
  • The III Conto Energia, approved the 6th of August 2010 has been stopped in advance, on the 31st of May 2011.
  • Decree 5 May 2011 defined the IV Conto energia, in force from the 1st of June 2011.
  • IV Conto Energia: the following types of PV systems are eligible to obtain the Tariffs:
    • PV systems built over buildings and “other” PV systems, further divided in:
      • “small” PV systems: roofs/building systems up to 1000 kW, and other systems up to 200 kW using Net Metering. 
      • “large” PV systems: systems not falling within the definition of “small” PV systems
    • “Integrated PV systems” with innovative features, being the modules specifically designed to substitute architectural elements;
    • “Concentraion PV systems”.
  • Goal of 23 GW in 2016. Mechanism to keep the costs under control and within a maximum cumulative expenditure of 6-7 Billions €/year in 2016.
  • Tariffs for PV Systems: from 1st June 2011 until 31st December 2016 tariffs will be decreased regularly and differentiated as follows:
  • 1st June 2011 - 31st December 2012 (transitional period): tariffs will depend on the type (roof/other) and power of the PV system and start operation date - month (2011) or semester (2012);
  • 1st January 2013 - 31st December 2016: all-inclusive Tariffs (tariffa onnicomprensiva) for the electricity fed into the grid and a premium Tariff for the own-consumed electricity. Tariffs will be different on the basis the type (roof/other) and power of the PV system and the start operation date (semester).
  • NOTE: the all inclusive tariff imply the exclusion of other forms of “valorization of the produced electricity” as (i) the scambio sul posto (net metering system); (ii) the ritiro dedicato; (iii) the sale of electricity to the market.

Notes on the Transition period - 2011 – 2012

  • Budgetary CAP and Registry for “large” PV systems
  • To access the tariffs all “large”” PV Systems will have to:
    be listed in the Registry with a ranking that falls within the budgetary CAP available for the period. The reaching of the CAP blocks the admission of new systems for the given period
    • provide a Certified completion of works within 7 months from the date the ranking is published (9 months for systems above 1 MW)
    • systems connected in 2011 or 2012 but failing to get the ranking will get the 2013 “Tariffa omnicomprensiva”.
    • Also, systems installed between June and August 2011 will be counted to decrease the budget limit for the II Semester  2012. Potential devoiding of the budget II Semester 2012 in 2011.
  • Feed in premium (FiT + sale of electricity or net metering)

Notes on period 2013–2016

  • “Soft” CAPs and dynamic tariff reductions. 
  • No register
  • No hard budgetary limits are applied 
  • All-inclusive Tariffs (tariffa onnicomprensiva) for the electricity fed into the grid and a “premium” Tariff for self-consumption
  • Tariffs are differentiated on the basis of:
    • the type of PV system (roof/other)
    • the power of the PV system and
    • the start operation date (semester).
  • If budgetary limits are exceeded a further reduction, additional to those planned, is applied for the next period.

December 2010 update

In Italy, the need for a better and more harmonised legal framework in the PV the sector as well as simpler and swifter administrative procedures has long been recognised.  The second half of 2010 brought a number of new provisions and some radical modifications going towards the goals of simpler and more transparent procedures for the authorisation and commissioning of PV systems. The most important updates are described below:  

  • The National Guidelines for the Autorizzazione Unica (the centralised procedure for the authorisation of PV Systems), foreseen by DLgs. 387/2003 and left aside for many years, have been adopted and published in the O.J. of the 18 September 2010 (“DM 18 Settembre 2010”).  This represents a great step forward in the necessary harmonisation of Italian legal frameworks for the authorisation of PV systems. The regions will have 90 days time from the entering into force of the decree, to adapt their legislation to the new guidelines. If this is not done, the National Guidelines will prevail over the regional norms. The issue of the necessity to adopt the Guidelines was largely debated in the National Advisory Paper and was at the core of the PV Legal National Forum held in Rome on September 8th 2010.
  • A simplified procedure for the landscape authorisation (DPR 09/07/2010 n. 139), has been adopted and published in the O.J. of August 26th, 2010. The regulation entered into force the 10th of September 2010. The simplified procedure will apply, among other types of “minor entity works” also to PV systems of up to 25 square meters (about 3 kW). The need for a simplification in the landscape procedure was dealt with in the PV Legal Advisory Paper, due to the vast areas of the Italian territory covered by landscape restrictions and the incidence of the procedure in the balance of “waiting times” for the administrative procedures highlighted by the Industry survey for Italy. The simplified procedure, as it is, will benefit only PV systems up to 3 kWp. Therefore the chance of having a simplified procedure covering the whole residential segment was not seized in its full potential.
  • The Environmental Impact Assessment (VIA) procedures have been modified by decree n. 128/2010, which aims at a reorganisation and simplification of the norms on Environmental Impact to better regulate the public interest in the protection of the environment with that of economic development. The decree was published in the O.J. n. 186 of August 11th, 2010 and entered into force the 26th of August. The VIA procedure was discussed in the Advisory Paper, particularly the need for a more uniform regulation at national level.
  • For what concerns the low and medium voltage, a convention between Enel and the Ministry of Economic Development have been signed to adapt the distribution grid to the use of electricity produced by PV systems (up to 1 MWp) and develop smart grid solutions in Campania, Puglia, Calabria and Sicily (structural funds). The Advisory Paper included the infrastructural issues highlighting the need for a prioritisation of the interventions according to the distributed generation paradigm.
  • With Deliberation ARG/elt 125/10 the Authority have published a revised Unified Text for Active Connections (TICA) (All. A to the Deliberation). The modifications aim to introduce swifter connection procedures, more transparency in the communications between the grid operators and project developers and introducing provisions concerning the requests of connection in areas (or lines) where the capacity of the grid is critical. The latter point was supposedly aimed at fighting speculative connection requests, but raised some concerns that were highlighted by Assosolare as well as by other industrial associations, particularly for what concerns the payment of guarantees for systems falling into these “critical areas” or “critical lines”. The need to overcome the speculative aspect in connection requests was largely debated in the Advisory Paper. The solution adopted with the new TICA does not answer at best the issue while creating further problems that will need to be addressed in the immediate future.
  • AEEG has also started support activities to grant financing to pilot projects aimed at developing smart grid solutions (Deliberation ARG/elt 39/10 of 25 march 2010). Following the indications of another deliberation of the AEEG (ARG-elt 93/09), the GSE has defined a procedure to improve the predictability of the production from variable and intermittent renewable sources.
  • As from December 1st, 2010 the procedure for the request of the incentives is done exclusively through the GSE web portal. The new procedure aims at speeding-up the procedures for the admission to the Conto Energia incentives and improves the efficiency of the service. GSE has also published the technical rules for the admission to the incentivising tariffs of the III Conto Energia (DM 6 agosto 2010).  The GSE has also published the Guide to innovative applications for BIPV, foreseen by the III Conto Energia and allowing the access to special tariffs for complying PV systems.

 

Status as of July 2010, updated in November 2010

In Italy, the need for a simplification and harmonization of the legal-administrative framework in the PV sector is widely recognized as a priority.  Actions are being taken at different levels.

                                            

  • The National Guidelines for the Autorizzazione Unica the centralized procedure for the authorization of PV Systems), foreseen by DLgs. 387/2003 and left aside for many years, have been readmitted to the political agenda. The document has been adopted the 8th of July 2010 by the State – Regions Unified Conference and will enter into force after publication in the OJ. Regions will have to adapt their frameworks to comply with the National guidelines within 90 days. The Autorizzazione Unica is one of the main bottlenecks for the PV sector in Italy and the lack of clear procedures defined at National level allowed for the proliferation of regional norms. The Guidelines are a significant step forward towards the simplification and harmonization of the authorization process in Italy.
    • Since July 2010 (last improvements update) the National guidelines have been adopted and published in the O.J. of the 18 September 2010 (“decreto10 settembre 2010”)  This represents a great step forward in the necessary harmonization of Italian legal framework for the authorization of PV systems. The Regions will have time 90 days from the entering into force of the decree, to adapt their legislation to the new guidelines. If this is not done, the National guidelines will prevail over the Regional norms.  
  • A Regulation (now being examined by the Parliament) will simplify the bureaucracy currently necessary to get the landscape authorization. This will imply important simplifications for the installation of PV systems when landscape restrictions are present and Superintendencies are involved. The regulation might sensibly reduce waiting times from more than 100 to 60 days to get the necessary permissions for a number of interventions judged to be of “minor entity”.
    • A simplified procedure for the landscape authorization (DPR 09/07/2010 n. 139), have been adopted and published in the O.J. of August 26, 2010. The regulation entered into force the 10th of September 2010. The simplified procedure will apply also to PV systems of up to 25 square meters (about 3 kW).
  • Modifications to the Legislative Decree 152/2006 (environment) have been adopted on June 24, 2010. The decree modifies, among others, the part II of the DLgs 152/2006 concerning the Environmental Impact Assessment (VIA) with the aim of simplifying the procedures and combining the public interest for the preservation of the environment with that of economic development.
    • The Environmental Impact Assessment procedures had been modified by decree n. 128/2010, which aims at a reorganization and simplification of the norms on Environmental Impact to better regulate the public interest in the protection of the environment with that of economic development. The decree was published in the O.J. n. 186 of August 11, 2010 and entered into force the 26th of August
  • Plans for the development of the transmission grid extension and capacity are ongoing. The development plan (see TERNA –Piano di Sviluppo 2010) addresses the implementation of the development of the necessary grid infrastructures, gives an overview of the status and time for completion of works. Particular attention is given to the infrastructural development of the southern Regions.TERNA is the Italian company operating  the Italian high-voltage transmission grid.
  • With regard to the low and medium voltage a convention between Enel and the Ministry of Economic Development was signed in February 2010 in order to adapt  the distribution grid to the use of electricity produced by PV systems (up to 1 MWp) and develop smart grid solutions in Campania, Puglia, Calabria and Sicily (structural funds).
  • Speculation on the grid connection permits and the “reservation” of the grid capacity has proved to be a problem particularly in some Regions. The Italian Authority for Electricity and Gas (AEEG) has acknowledged the issue in its “Relazione dell’Autorità per l’Energia Elettrica e il Gas sullo stato di utilizzo ed integrazione degli impianti alimentati da fonti rinnovabili”, (PAS 3/10 of January 29, 2010). AEEG has subsequently issued a consultation document (Documento di consultazione DCO 15/10) to address the problem of speculation by introducing some specific provisions in the regulation governing the procedures, costs and timing for the connection of RES systems to the grid (Unified Text for Active Connections - TICA).
    • With Deliberation Arg/elt 125/10 the Authority have published a revised Unified Text for Active Connections (TICA) (All. A to the Deliberation). The modifications aim to introduce swifter connection procedures, more transparency in the communications between the subjects involved and introducing provisions concerning the requests of connection in areas (or lines) where the capacity of the grid critical.
  • Some improvements are being introduced in the direction of a better and easier access to the FiT. The Deliberation of the Authority (AEEG) ARG/elt 173/09 gives the GSE (in charge of managing the electricity services) responsibility to introduce on-line procedures in order to simplify the information and document exchange between producers and GSE for the access to the incentives.  A new procedure for the formalization and subscription of the contract of the FiT Conto Energia has been introduced as of January 2010.
  • AEEG started support activities to grant funding to pilot projects aimed at developing smart grid solutions (Deliberation Arg/elt 39/10 of 25 march 2010).
  • Following the indications of another deliberation of the AEEG (ARG-elt 93/09), the GSE has defined a procedure to improve the predictability of the production from variable and intermittent renewable sources.
  • Start of Activity Declaration. With Law n. 122 of 30th of July 2010, modifying art. 19 of Law 241/1990 the Start of Activity Declaration (DIA) has been substituted by the "Certified Start of Activity Report" (SCIA) The SCIA will have to be accompanied by certifications and technical documentation and will allow for the immediate start of the works without waiting 30 days for the silent absent as required by the DIA procedure.


April 2010 update

The National Guidelines for the Autorizzazione Unica (the one stop shop procedure for the authorization of PV Systems), foreseen by law and left aside for many years, have been readmitted to the political agenda after the issue was raised by Assosolare in the framework of the PV LEGAL project. A draft is now waiting to be discussed by the State – Regions Unified Conference and should be approved in 2010. The Autorizzazione Unica is one of the main bottlenecks for the PV sector in Italy.

A new regulation (now being examined by the Parliament) will simplify the bureaucratic procedure currently necessary to obtain the landscape authorization for PV systems having a “minor impact” on the buildings.  The regulation might reduce waiting times from more than 100 days to 60 days in those cases where landscape restrictions are present and Sopraintendenze (Ministerial offices at local level in charge of controlling that the heritage, landscape and architectural qualities of the territory are preserved correctly and responsible for the issuing of permissions) are involved. Also the administrative burden for the offices involved will be significantly reduced.

Some improvements are also being introduced in the direction of a better and easier access to the feed in tariffs. The energy regulatory authority AEEG has given the Gestore dei Servizi Energetici (GSE, institution in charge of managing the energetic services and the feed-in tariffs) responsibility to introduce on-line procedures in order to simplify the information and document exchange between producers and GSE for the access to the incentives.  A new procedure has been introduced as of January 2010.