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Giorgia Meloni puts brakes on Italy’s solar energy rollout

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on the Financial Times or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Italian PM Giorgia Meloni's government is slowing solar panel installations on farmland, claiming it threatens food sovereignty
• A recent emergency decree bans ground-mounted solar panels on agricultural land, requiring costly elevated installations
• Green advocates argue this jeopardizes Italy's solar capacity goal of 80GW by 2030

🔭 The context: The decree must be approved by parliament and was led by Agriculture Minister Francesco Lollobrigida
• Critics highlight that elevated panels are 20-40% more expensive, reducing competitiveness
• Farmers and experts dispute claims that solar panels harm agriculture, noting many agricultural lands are unsuitable for crops due to poor conditions

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: This policy could hinder Italy's renewable energy progress and its climate commitments
• It creates barriers to adopting cheaper, sustainable energy solutions like solar power
• Limiting solar developments undermines efforts to combat climate change effectively

⏭️ What's next: Parliament will decide on the decree's fate
• If passed, the renewable energy sector may face significant challenges
• The outcome will impact Italy's ability to meet its international green energy targets and transition to sustainable energy

💬 One quote: "If we create these conditions that make investment unappealing, we’re not going to be able to do this energy transition in time" (Patrizio Donati, Terrawatt co-founder)

📈 One stat: Italy has 16 million hectares of farmland, with nearly a quarter lying fallow due to poor soil quality, lack of irrigation, and other factors

Click for more news covering the latest on renewables

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