Italy, Cingolani: in 24-30 months independent from Russian gas and without coal
(Sustainabilityenvironment.com) – Italy can become indipendent from Russian gas already in 2023 without using new coal. This is what the Italian Minister of Ecological Transition, Roberto Cingolani, said during an interview. Responding to the questions of the journalist, Sento Bonin about the current energy situation, Cingolani explained the next steps of the Government. And the proposals that Italy has brought in Europe to counter the expensive energy.
The main question remains the strong national dependence on Russian gas. Today Moscow supplies about 29 billion cubic meters of natural gas to Italy. Over 40% of national demand. A significant quantity that puts the nation in a condition of strong weakness. But, explains Cingolani, Italy has tried to remedy. And “by late spring 16 billion cubic meters will be replaced by other suppliers in the world”.
The government plan looks forwardto set a series of strengthening actions. “24-30 months should allow us to be completely independent” from Russian gas, says the minister. How? We look at the development of renewable sources, the fastest technology to implement, once the bureaucratic obstacles have been removed. Work on this front has already begun. The latest Energy Decree, for example, has simplified the installation of plants up to 200 kW of photovoltaic and solar thermal on buildings.
But most of the expectations are about LNG (liquified natural gas). “We have to increase our regasification capacity”, said number one of the MiTE, explaining how today in Italy there are only three regasification plants and 60% of their operating capacity. These plants “can soon be brought to a higher efficiency, then produce more gas”. And “by the middle of this year, we are going to install a first floating regasified”. An approach that would make it possible to bring this plant directly near the gas networks.
“Other infrastructure in the next 12 months” will join the previous plants there will be a new push against the so-called synthetic fuels, from biomethane to hydrogen. However, the latter “require more time”. “I think I can say with a wide margin of safety that we will guarantee the path of decarbonization”, says Cingolani. And if for some reason the Russian supply was cut off before the long-term security, “our current reserves and contingency plan would give us enough time to get to the good season […] In April we should have between 15 and 16 billion mc.
Reassurances also on the issue of coal. For now, the project does not plan to reactivate the old thermal power plants. “We do not reopen anything because the project is not worthwhile”. Only in case of a serious and sudden emergency, the two coal-fired power plants still working in Brindisi and Civitavecchia would be sent “at full capacity for a limited period”.