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Operational Guide Lines for authorization of stand-alone electrochemical storage systems

On 16 April 2024, the Ministry of the Environment and Secure Energy (“MASE“) published the Operational Guidelines for the Single Permit Applications for Stand-alone Electrochemical Storage Systems.

The Guidelines provide specific instructions on the procedure for the Single Authorization – and any related grid connections – for BESS (Battery Energy Storage System) in areas occupied by fossil fuel-fired power generation plants with a capacity of 300 thermal MW -or more-, and in non-industrial areas, in accordance with Article 1(2)(b) of Legislative Decree No. 7 of 7 February 2002.

Division IV of the Directorate General for Energy Resources and Authorizations (DG-FTA) of the MASE has the power to issue the Single Authorization, except for projects located in the Sicily Region that are assigned to Service 3 of the Regional Energy Department of the Regional Ministry of Energy and Public Utilities of the Sicily Region.

The Operational Guidelines define the minimum content of the application and the documents necessary to start the authorization procedure, which is carried out within a Conference meeting of all interested administrations. The BESS are not subject to environmental impact assessment pursuant to Legislative Decree No. 152/2006 and regional consent to simplify the procedure.

After examining the application, the MASE – if it considers the documentation complete- convenes the asynchronous Conference meeting for delivery of the project to the competent authorities and administrations and completion of anti-mafia checks. The MASE also activates any necessary expropriation procedure.

After the final examination of the opinions and communications received, the MASE convenes the Synchronous Conference meeting for approval of the notice of closure of the procedure and related final determination, and the authorization decree in case of a positive outcome.

The MASE has also published a checklist for the preparation of application documents and forms.

The Guidelines and annexes are available here.

This is a further step, in terms of clarity of the applicable rules and procedures, to accelerate the implementation of stand-alone storage systems, which are considered fundamental in the energy transition process and the need to achieve progressive and complete decarbonization by 2050; a major challenge that will require Europe, and therefore also Italy, to increase energy production from renewable sources, which must be accompanied by a progressive increase in the availability of energy storage capacity.


Tiziana Fiorella

Alberto Taverniti