The use of renewable energy sources has recently been gaining prominence in the national energy strategies of many nations, Italy included. Our country agrees on the need for a more balanced energy mix that includes the production of renewable energy, in keeping with its pledge to achieve the goals established by the European “20-20-20” Directive.
Italy has made major progress in the renewable energy sector, and growth prospects over the coming years include a significant increase in the production of wind and solar power.
Pilot cooperation projects are therefore being developed with the countries of the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) and the Balkans regarding the production of renewable energy and its transport to the Italian market.
Among Mediterranean cooperation projects, deserving of mention is the Mediterranean Solar Plan for the development of renewable energy and reinforcement of interconnections with the electrical power grid, with the installation of 20 gigawatts (GW) of new renewable resource capacity in the Mediterranean within the year 2020.
Of major importance also is the development of Smart Grid technologies capable of integrating highly variable and locally distributed renewable energy sources.
As a co-founder, along with the United States and Korea, Italy supports the multilateral ISGAN (International Smart Grid Action Network) initiative, engaged in covering the various aspects of smart grids: policy and regulation, standardisation, technological development, end-user involvement and capacity-building.