The process of transposition of the RED II Directive began with the Decreto Milleproroghe (so-called “Thousand-extension” Decree-Law) which came into force at the end of February 2020 and introduced in the Italian legislation the definitions of:
- Renewable Energy Communities;
- Renewable energy self-consumers acting collectively.
Specifically, RECs are legal entities made up of groups of subjects (such as natural persons, local authorities, companies) located in the vicinity of renewable energy production plants that group on a voluntary basis to produce and consume clean electricity, according to the principles of self-consumption and energy self-sufficiency.
Self-consumers of renewable energy, on the other hand, are end customers who, by operating in own sites located within defined borders, produce renewable electricity for their own consumption and can store or sell self-produced renewable electricity provided that, for a renewable energy self-consumer other than a household, such activities do not constitute the main commercial or professional activity. We speak of a group of self-consumers when a group of at least two self-consumers acts collectively by virtue of a private agreement and who are located in the same condominium or building.
These two configurations are very important tools to encourage the active involvement of citizens in the country’s energy transition process, and to counteract the phenomenon of rising energy prices for families and businesses.
However, the Thousand-extension Decree-Law also introduced some limitations that are important for the development of RECs, such as: the concept of physical proximity for the aggregations, limiting the creation of energy communities to users with the same secondary substation, and the total power limit for systems that cannot exceed 200 kW.
The next step was the ARERA Resolution no. 318/2020 of August 2020, which contains the Authority’s provisions on the regulation of economic entries relating to electricity that is the object of collective self-consumption or of sharing as part of a renewable energy community.
Subsequently, the Implementation Decree of the MiSE of September 15, 2020 whose article 3 sets the incentive tariff, recognised for 20 years, for the remuneration of the energy produced by renewable energy plants included in the aforementioned configurations:
- 100 €/MWh if the production plant is part of a collective self-consumption configuration;
- 110 €/MWh if the production plant is part of a renewable energy community.
To date, this measure has not undergone any changes and it is possible to carry out simulations on the generation of incentives with the ROSE Energy Community Designer.
Other important measures, in the context of the ecological transition, are those contained in the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP), approved on 13 July 2021, which allocates approximately 60 billion in investments to the “Green Revolution and Ecological Transition”. Of these, 23.78 billion are devoted overall to renewable energies and specifically 2.2 billion for the development of energy communities. The objectives to be achieved are to increase the quota of energy produced from renewable energy sources (RES), to strengthen and digitise the network infrastructures in order to accommodate the increase in production from RES.
About a month later, on 5th August, the Council of Ministers preliminarily approved the implementing decree of various European directives, including the RED II and IEM, and published the draft.