Italy, solar power moves toward grid parity

The Italian photovoltaic industry begins to move towards grid parity, the point at which alternative means of generating electricity – in this case solar energy – is at least as cheap as fossil fuel production. The latter was confirmed by a study from the European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA), which was presented at the last Italian PV summit, held in Verona.

According to Ingmar Wilhelm, EPIA President and e Head of Business Development at Enel Green Power, in Italy already in 2013 a 100 kWp solar plant will cost less " than grid-power . As regards 3 kWp plants for families, grid-parity will be achieved two years later."

While debate on the Fourth “Conto Energia” incentive system and on government policy on solar incentives, the information presented by EPIA shows that the future can be positive for solar operators though maybe not bright.

The study presented in Verona predicted that by 2020 1 KWh of solar energy could cost half as much as it costs today. Although this prediction varies according to the location and size of plants, it is certain that it will be gradually achieved take over the next ten years.

For EPIA, grid parity will be firstly achieved by companies that have large solar farms and are closer to the breakeven point, in 2014 by wind farms exceeding 2 MW and in 2015 by those with more than 500 KW. Subsequently, plants with lesser capacity will follow.

In the near future – without the support of incentives – best achievements will be based on a successful research and innovation and greater energy market penetration, which according to a EPIA will be essential forsolar photovoltaic industries that are preparing to stand on their own.