Paper published about Venice and Italy: Renewables Policy as a Barrier to Energy Innovation

sunedison-solar-power, Venice, italy

This academic paper by Dominic Standish has been published in the journal Energy and Environment, Vol. 23, No. 6 & 7, 2012.

The full text of the paper is available using the publisher’s website here:

Italy: Renewables Policy as a Barrier to Energy Innovation

This is the abstract of the paper:

Italy’s limited natural energy reserves, high dependency on imports and enormous user costs provide an opportunity to innovate. Yet the 2008-2011 Italian government failed to uphold its legislation permitting construction of innovative nuclear reactors. As this government’s popularity dwindled, subsidising low-risk renewable projects appeared more popular, especially for solar installations. European and Italian subsidies for Italian renewable energy have encouraged the more widespread application of existing technologies, rather than innovation.
During 2012, Italy’s technocratic government has debated a new energy law, which will continue incentives for low-capacity, renewable and low-risk energy projects, although with reduced subsidies. The new law will not support serious technological innovation to boost energy production, reduce import dependency or defray high costs. Instead, this paper recommends expanding hydro-electric power, exploiting shale gas, constructing more large-scale solar installations, equipping coal-fired power plants with carbon capture and storage, and building at least four nuclear European Pressurised Reactors.

For further information, please contact me at: dstandish@europe.com

Thanks, Dominic

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  1. […] The first speaker of this event spoke of how Gross Domestic Product is able to be the nemesis to energy-use as power consumption therefore challenging architectural organisations to create unique and innovative internationally-located buildings in desert regions which inter-relate with their environment and so optimising building cooling without reliance upon additional energy usage to do so. What was not discussed is whether those building materials are sourced locally or are imported and how this affects the economy of that location- perhaps this information was not provided by the financers.  This led on to the second speaker who discussed the environmental justice of the planning triangle between equity, environment and economy which have sustainable development in the centre of the triangle. The balancing of the triangle is able to create conflict between developers, financers and the level of internal and external environmental protection provided by the environmental performance of buildings. The third speaker expanded informing that the retrofit to existing buildings can result in mechanical passive ventilation and light entering into rooms and that these may be unexpected to departments and their employees. Speaker two questioned the use of retrofit into historic buildings commenting that users will often accept different conditions in an older building than in newer buildings because they appreciate the older building differently to the newer building. No-one discussed how the two buildings can successfully be combined as has happened to John Rylands Library, Deansgate whereby the newer building does not dominate its older counterpart yet the two co-exist as one even though they are remarkably different. Nor was discussed how heat recovery can assist employees working in the older counterpart by providing thermal comfort. The final speaker provided a European case study and based upon scientific evidence from IPPC and Met Office data to argue that state-of-the-art renewable energy at source can provide the environment greater efficiency results rather than focussing upon buildings’ environmental inputs, outputs and outcomes. For further information read this speakers’ site. […]



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