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Italy bans ground-mounted solar panels on agricultural land

By AFP

May 7, 2024 10:19 AM


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Italy's rightwing government on Monday banned the installation of ground-based solar panels on agricultural land, just days after Rome committed to triple installed renewable energy capacity by 2030.

"We put an end to the wild installation of ground-mounted photovoltaic panels," Agriculture Minister Francesco Lollobrigida said at a press conference following the cabinet meeting.

The ban covers photovoltaic systems placed on the ground in areas classified as agricultural, but does not refer to agrivoltaic projects, where solar panels are installed above fields of crops, Lollobrigida said.

Projects benefitting from EU funds, such as energy communities, are exempt.

Coordinamento Free, an umbrella group for renewable energy businesses and environmental associations, warned earlier on Monday that such a ban would "block many photovoltaic projects".

"As a result, Italy will fail to meet the 2030 decarbonisation targets," it said.

Clean energy is essential to reduce emissions from burning fossil fuels and for any hope of keeping the international target of restricting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Italy last week committed, along with fellow G7 nations, to triple renewables by 2030.

Energy Minister Gilberto Pichetto Fratin said the ban on ground-mounted panels on agricultural land would not stop the government installing some 38 GW through photovoltaic plants by that date.

Monday's ban is part of a draft law that must be approved by parliament and may be modified before that.


AFP


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