Italian energy company Dolomiti Energia has secured €100 million ($121 million) in European Investment Bank (EIB) funding to modernise its electricity and water distribution infrastructure. The aim is to achieve water and energy sustainability and transition goals set by both the Italian government and the European Commission. Dolomiti Energia will use the loan to fund its 2021-2023 development plan.
The utility will be installing second-generation smart meters and smart street lights to digitise its grid network, a development that will help improve consumer energy efficiency and the management of the electricity distribution system.
This will better align the utility with the digital transformation blowing across Europe under efforts to ensure real-time management of the electricity network to ensure more distributed energy resources are integrated as well to improve customer services through the introduction of new customer-centric business cases. Upgrades to the energy network will have a direct positive impact on approximately 335,000 consumers whilst upgrades to the water infrastructure will benefit 78,000 households in north-eastern Italy.
Energy transition and grid flexibility
EIB Director for loans in Italy, Malta and the Balkans Miguel Morgado said: “As the climate bank, the EIB is ever more committed to supporting projects linked to combating climate change. The investment plan presented by Dolomiti Energia Group and to be implemented by 2024 includes actions in various sectors and aims to improve the efficiency and resilience of the services offered in the Autonomous Province of Trento.”
In addition to securing the EIB loan under plans to meet its energy transition goals, Dolomiti Energia has acquired Italian flexibility and energy management solutions firm EPQ. With its 33% stake in EPQ, Dolomiti Energia plans to expand its portfolio of renewable sources, community microgrids and energy storage plants.
Commenting on the acquisition, Massimo De Alessandri President of the Dolomiti Energia Group, said: “ In line with the national and European sustainability objectives, this partnership will make it possible to contribute, also thanks to the help of new technologies, to improving the energy efficiency and flexibility of the country. This is an opportunity to expand the Group’s contribution to the energy transition path towards a more sustainable development model and to create value for the Group by guaranteeing a leadership position in a market sector with strong growth prospects.”