The PNRR shield against the energy crisis

With the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, the price of gas for small businesses in the first quarter of 2022 increased on average by 42% ( source Unioncamere and BMTI ) and Italy's total energy consumption depends for about 42% on gas coming from from Russia. This war has highlighted even more the fact that Italy is not autonomous from an energy point of view and over the years it has not been possible to find a real alternative to gas.

The diversification of energy sources would have been an objective to be pursued with greater incisiveness at national (and European) level, however, in the current emergency situation it is necessary to accelerate the energy transition in order to rapidly reduce the share of gas used.

In this perspective, it would be desirable to prepare a set of incentives dedicated to companies to increase and encourage their investments in renewable energy and in the energy efficiency of production processes .

An interesting article from Il Sole 24 Ore last March 10, signed by Leonardo and Claudio Becchetti, offers excellent food for thought in this regard: given the success of the 110% Superbonus reserved for residential users, why not also support businesses with incentives for the installation of photovoltaic panels? Having large surfaces available, companies could install the systems on the roofs of warehouses, offices, parking lots, immediately using the energy produced and using it in production.

The measure envisaged by Mission 2 "Green revolution and ecological transition" is also moving in this direction, and specifically by the ' Agricultural Park ' Investment included in the 'Circular economy and sustainable agriculture' component of the PNRR to which resources equal to 1 are dedicated. , 5 billion euros .

Our country is among those in the EU that use the most energy in food production, energy costs represent over 20% of costs for farms. As already mentioned, however, it is possible to produce renewable energy using the roofs of existing buildings (for agricultural, livestock or agro-industrial use), and this is what the aforementioned measure is proposed.

The intervention involves the installation of photovoltaic panels on the roofs of buildings for productive use in the agricultural, livestock and agro-industrial sectors , aiming to reach a total area of ​​4.3 million square meters for 0.43 GW, and thus helping to increase the sustainability and energy efficiency of the sector.

Simultaneously with the installation of the panels, a  redevelopment of the production facilities will be implemented with the removal of asbestos and the enhancement of the ventilation, so as to improve the living conditions of the animals raised.

The objective is to support investments for the construction of electricity production plants in the agricultural sector, totally excluding land consumption.

Based on what has already been indicated in the technical consultation notice, released by Mipaaf last December, the interventions admitted must concern the installation of photovoltaic panels with the possibility of carrying out one or more of the following interventions at the same time:

  • removal and disposal of asbestos on roofs in compliance with current legislation;
  • realization of the thermal insulation of the roofs;
  • creation of a ventilation system connected to the replacement of the roof (air gap).

Expenses incurred will be allowed up to the maximum threshold of 250,000 euros excluding VAT.

There is also provision for a spending threshold for the interventions recognized up to 1,500 euro / kWp (Kilowatt Peak).

The maximum power of the plants admitted to the incentive is equal to 300 kWp, while the plants with a power lower than 10 kWp will not be admitted.

The incentive will be recognized in the capital account to the extent of 65% of the admitted expenditure, with the possibility of a further increase of 25% for youth businesses.

The measure will concern single or associated agricultural enterprises with the qualification of Professional Agricultural Entrepreneur (IAP), Direct Farmers enrolled in the agricultural pension, agro-industrial enterprises.

 The applications will be evaluated by the GSE, indicated by MiPAAF as the implementer of the PNRR intervention line, with which a 'public-public' agreement is being prepared which will allow the implementation of the photovoltaic programs to be immediately started, whose applications will have received a favorable opinion.

The announcement is expected to be published by 31 March.