CSP : stay focused
CSP, i.e. Concentrated Solar Power, seems they finally reached the cost effectiveness and the reliability expected by the Banks and Investors. This, at least so far, in the US and Italian market.
Let’s analyze the Italian case and let’s start from the end of incentives to photovoltaic projects.
Due to the approval of the decree of the Authority which certified the threshold of the cumulative annual incentives of 6.7 billion Euros, the incentives defined by the Ministerial Decree of 5 July 2012 had expired on July 6th 2013.
This was the end of the Italian feed in tariff scheme for photovoltaic which still brought to an impressive boom of installations in a relatively short time period. The photovoltaic systems that have requested incentive to the Italian Government are 531,242, for a total capacity of about 18,217 MW.
At the end of the incentive program there were many projects authorized which could not be completed due to lack of financing or for some delays in the permit and authorization process.
This means that there many authorized projects, land plots that have been put under contract, grid connection that have been secured for specific inlet power. Everything needed for a project to be built but the necessary economics that are missing for the lack of feed in tariff.
Now two different things are happening in the sunniest region in Italy: i) relatively big project to be built under a Grid Parity scheme (i.e. no feed in tariff, only share from electricity sale to the market); ii) relatively small project of CSP that still can benefit of very interesting tariffs for the next few years.
The time schedule for the realization of a CSP project is far to be comparable with the old photovoltaic ones. Still, the very promising IRR of CSP projects seems to be attractive enough for local investors.
Foreign investors seems to be not yet in the concentrating solar market, since the technology needs more experienced players.
The authorization processes, the feed in tariff scheme, the main technology available and the first realized project will be analyzed later in this Blog.