Italy allocates only 20 MW of PV in fourth renewables auction


The Gestore dei Servizi Energetici (GSE), the Italian energy agency, allocated 279.3 MW of renewables capacity in the country's fourth clean energy auction, for projects with capacities above 1 MW.

The procurement exercise, which drew bids for 831.2 MW of capacity, was once again under-subscribed. The government initially hoped to assign 1.16 GW of new projects.

Wind power was once again the leading source, with 259 MW allocated across twelve sites. The GSE also awarded 20 MW of solar capacity across three locations. These include two PV projects submitted by Trisol 82 Srl, planned to be located in the province of Nuoro, in the region of Sardinia, with capacities of 4.16 MW and 5.09 MW, respectively. For both projects, the offered price was €0.06819/kWh, which was the lowest bid of the procurement exercise.

The third project is a 10.6 MW PV plant planned by Engie Rinnovabili Sardegna Srl in the same province of Nuovo. The company offered a price of €0.0686/kWh in an auction with a €70/MWh price ceiling.

In the third renewables auction, held in October, the GSE had assigned 95.5 MW of solar capacity across four locations. The lowest bid – submitted for a PV project – was €0.06490/kWh. The big surprise in that tender was the inclusion of an 82.3 MW solar power plant to be built in the municipality of Uta, near Cagliari, which is also located in Sardinia.

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In the second renewables auction, only 19.3 MW of PV capacity was allocated across four projects. The lowest price, of €56/MWh, was offered for a solar project. In the first procurement round, only one 5 MW solar plant was awarded, along with 495 MW of wind capacity. The single PV project will sell electricity for €60/MWh.

The limited success of solar in these exercises is due to tender rules that exclude projects on agricultural land. The Italian government hopes to allocate approximately 4.8 GW of generating capacity in the auction scheme, which includes smaller procurement rounds for projects under 1 MW.

Italy, which has around 20.9 GW of solar capacity, is planning to install around 50 GW by 2030.

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