Italy to shut down coal power stations by 2025 – Minister

Italy will phase out coal-powered power stations by 2025, the Economic Development Minister, Carlo Calenda, said at a parliamentary committee meeting on Tuesday.

“The political objective is phasing out coal by 2025,” Calenda told the joint environment and industry committees of the lower and upper houses of parliament, as quoted by the ANSA news agency.

The target should be part of a National Energy Strategy that the government will publish by Nov. 10, the minister said.

In a current draft version, the strategy sets 2030 as a target date.

Jan Kowalzig, A Climate Change Expert at the German Section of International Non-Governmental Organization Oxfam, called on the next German government – currently under negotiation following September’s federal election – to follow Italy’s lead.

“Existing climate protection targets will only be achieved with a swift phase-out of coal,” he said in a statement.

“Other countries, including France, Canada and now also Italy have made a withdrawal from coal usage a fixed part of their programme. Now Germany must do the same,” Kowalzig said.

Italy currently has nine coal power stations.

There are already plans to shut five of them, but a full exit from fossil fuel power would require developing alternative sources of energy, the government says.

Its draft strategy paper identifies a need for 2.3 billion to 2.7 billion euros’ (2.7 billion to 3.2 billion dollars’) worth of investments, including in gas power generation in Sardinia.

Calenda said the 2025 target will only be achievable if local authorities avoid a “NIMBY (Not In My BackYard) syndrome” and give out the necessary permits for new energy projects. (dpa/NAN)

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