Coal plants in Italy

Italy imports via sea about 90% of its coal demand, on a fleet composed by 60 ships with a carrying capacity of 4,6 million of tons. Import countries are different: the main ones are the USA, South Africa, Australia, Indonesia and Colombia, but there are also Canada, Cina, Russia and Venezuela.

The only coal source in Italy is located in Sulcis Iglesiente basin, in South-West of Sardinia. In 1972 mining activities in this basin were suspended but since 1997 the basin has been studied by several researchers in order to evaluate new solutions to use in an environmental friendly way the coal of Sulcis. At present, the production is about 1 Million tons yearly. Italian operators have in pipeline projects for the conversion of coal of a big part of their production and for the deployment of existing plants never used for coal combustion.

Today in Italy there are 13 coal plants:

  • Plant of North Brindisi (BR) owned by EDIPOWER SpA. The company Uses coal in 2 sections of 320MW.
  • Plant of Fiumesanto (SS): owned by E.ON ITALIA, has got 2 sections of 320 MW.
  • Plant of Monfalcone (GO) in Friuli Venezia Giulia region: owned by A2A, is made of 4 sections, two fuelled by coal of 165 and 171 MW and two by burning oil of 320 MW.
  • Plant of North Torrevaldaliga (Civitavecchia, RM) owned by ENEL SpA, is composed by three sections of 660 MW, that have been completely converted from oil to coal. The plant is in production since 2009.
  • Plant of Vado Ligure, owned by TIRRENO POWER, is made of 4 sections of which two of 330 MW each fuelled by coal. The project for the construction of a new high-efficiency coal unit of 460 MW, combined with the modernization of the existing sections with the aim of improving the environmental performnce, obtained the VIA (Enviromental Impact Assessment) by the Ministry for Environment in 2009.
  • Plant of Brescia owned by ASM of Brescia is made of one section of 70 MW and is fuelled by coal.
  • Plant of South Brindisi, owned by ENEL, is made of two sections of 660 MW each fuelled by coal. The development of a pilot plant of 50 MW with CO2 capture and sequestration technology is currently in progress. The construction is part of the agreement between ENI and ENEL signed in October 2008 and aimed at developing CCS technology at industrial level.
  • Plant of Genoa, owned by ENEL SpA, is made by two units fuelled by coal, oneof 295 MW.
  • Plant of Sulcis owned by ENEL SpA, is made of one unit of 240 MW fuelled by coal.
  • Plant of Fusina (Veneto) owned by ENEL SpA, is made of two of 320 MW fuelled by coal.
  • Plant of Marghera owned by ENEL SpA is made of two units of 70 MW fuelled by coal.
  • Plant of La Spezia owned by ENEL SpA is made of four units of which one is of 600 MW and is fuelled by coal.
  • Plant of Bastardo (Perugia) owned by ENEL SpA is made of two units of 75 MW fuelled by coal.

In addition to the 13 existing coal plants, the following projects:

  • The plant in Porto Tolle, owned by ENEL, obtained the VIA (Enviromental Impact Assessment) from Regione Veneto, that allows the conversion of 4 oil groups into 3 high-efficiency (> 45%) coal groups, with a total power of 1,980 MW.
  • The SEI project in Saline Joniche will count on a plant, fueled by coal dust, equipped with two twin lines with a total power of 1,320 MWe. The plant will reach a very high efficiency (more than 45%), by reducing the coal consumption and the emissions that will be remarkably lower than law limits (-50%).

In June 2008, SEI S.p.A. started the authorization procedure; in October 2010 the company obtained the evaluation of the environmental compatibility of the project from the VIA Commission.