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Italy adds 1.72GW of new PV installations in Q1

published: 2024-05-30 16:49

In the first quarter of 2024, Italy had more than 1.7GW of installed PV capacity, a significant increase compared to the same period in 2023.

The largest increase was seen in large ground-mounted power plant installations, which were up more than 373% from the first quarter of 2023. New large ground-mounted PV capacity installed in the first three months of the year was 579 MW, compared to 123 MW in the same period in 2023.

This growth was driven by eight new projects, each over 10MW in size, coming online during the period, adding 281MW of capacity.

Italia Solare, the Italian solar industry association, said that 622MW of these 10MW+ projects have been connected to the grid since October 2023, with grid connections occurring every month.

Growth in the residential sector also remained strong, with 547MW installed, up 4% from 525MW in Q4 2023. However, the government's 'Super Bonus' incentive for residential power systems has ended, which is expected to reduce the uptake of new systems in the long term.

The commercial and industrial sector also grew significantly, more than doubling from 289MW in Q1 2023 to 595MW in Q1 2024.

Italia Solare said this was mainly due to the increase in the national single price (PUN) in the second half of 2023 and a general rise in energy costs, which drove installations in Q1 2024, due to the time needed for commissioning, construction and grid connection, which started last year.

The impressive Q1 figures were preceded by an equally strong 2023 in Italy, which saw the highest new installed capacity of large-scale solar in more than a decade. More than 5.3GW of new capacity was installed last year, compared to 2.4GW in 2022.

While Italia Solare says that Italy currently has around 32GW of PV projects installed, it estimates that over 140GW are currently in the interconnection queue waiting for grid access. Many of these projects exist only on paper and may not be commissioned in the short term, but waiting times and oversubscription remain well above current capacity.

Terna, the Italian grid operator, announced an $18 billion investment plan in March to expand and modernize the Italian grid by 2028 to address these issues.

The country is also in the process of passing a law that would prohibit the deployment of solar energy on agricultural land. In announcing the proposal, Italia Solare said the passage of the law would cost the country 60 billion euros ($64.5 billion).

Source: PV-Tech

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