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Italian Solar Power Capacity Expected To Reach 30 GW By 2020


Italy’s solar market is expected to see an unprecedented boom. According to Fulvio Conti, CEO of Enel, the country will generate 30GW of solar power by 2020, in an attempt to reach its goal of fighting against climate change.

Italy’s solar market has rapidly grown since 2007 when the government has attracted the world’s biggest makers of photovoltaic modules by boosting the production subsidies. Regarding the solar market, Italy is the world’s second-largest after Germany.

“As of June 30, we have already exceeded a national target set for 2020 of 8 gigawatts (GW). Going ahead at the same pace, we can estimate that we can arrive at 30 GW in 2020,” Fulvio Conti, chief executive of Italy’s biggest utility, Enel , said at the official opening of a new solar modules manufacturing plant on Friday.

Industry executives believe that the Italian solar industry is surely moving toward grid parity (when solar power generation costs equal the cost of producing power from fossil fuels).

Currently, Sharp, STMicroelectronic and Enel Green Power (EGP) have developed a new plant near Catania, on the island of Sicily, which according to the companies will produce photovoltaic modules with a total capacity of 160MW a year. The plant will start production at the end of 2011 and is also expected to rise up to 480 MW worth of modules a year by 2014.

“We can arrive even at 1,000 MW a year if the market absorbs it,” EGP Chief Executive Francesco Starace said.

[via Reuters]

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