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Aura Power confirms final approval for 200MW/800MWh Italy BESS project

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UK-based Aura Power has announced the final approval for a 200MW/800MWh battery energy storage system (BESS) in Italy, confirming Energy-Storage.news’ recent article.

A ministerial decree was issued last week confirming the project’s earlier approval in January by the regional authority in Campania, as reported by Energy-Storage.news last week. A grid connection from transmission system operator (TSO) Terna was secured by Aura back in 2018.

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The developer, which is active across Europe but primarily the UK, said construction on the BESS will start in 2025.

The news last week coincided with Regulatory Authority for Energy, Networks and the Environment (Autorità di Regolazione per Energia Reti e Ambiente or ARERA) approving new criteria and conditions for large-scale energy storage in the electricity market. The new rules will allow Terna to run large-scale auctions for the technology, which sources expect to take place in late 2023/early 2024.

Aura Power was supported by local law firm Legance on getting the project to this stage. Cristina Martorana, partner at the firm, commented:

“I still remember when Aura Power called me 5 years ago asking for legal support in the BESS field of law for this pioneer project. At that time, the legal framework was completely missing.”

“Now the Maddaloni project is a reality thanks to the forward-looking approach of Aura Power, their resilience and the great cooperation and professionalism shown by all the competent authorities involved in the authorization procedure. Thanks also to the Maddaloni project, Legance can claim a unique expertise and knowledge in the relevant market.”

The grid-scale energy storage market in Italy looks set to grow substantially in the coming years, kickstarted by big wins in Fast Reserve and Capacity Market auctions in 2020 and 2022, respectively. Business cases are being built mainly around capacity markets, energy trading and renewable load shifting, which Aura Power’s four-hour duration is indicative of.

Energy-Storage.news looked at the Italian market for a special feature in the 35th quarterly edition of PV Tech Power, available here (Premium access).

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