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Electricity in Italy in 2022

Global Ranking: #49
31.6% #103 Low-carbon electricity
620.03 watts #58 Generation / person
376.07 gCO2eq/kWh #82 Carbon Intensity
Up to 51% Electricity imports

As of 2022, more than half of Italy's electricity consumption is derived from fossil fuels, totaling at around 55%, with gas accounting for the majority at approximately 44%. Low carbon sources, including hydropower, solar, wind, biofuels, and geothermal energies, make up around 32% of the total electricity consumption. Hydropower contributes about 9%, while solar and wind energy represent nearly 9% and over 6% respectively. It's noteworthy that Italy relies on net electricity imports, which constitutes more than 13% of the nation's total electricity consumption, and it had a peak value of 51%.


To increase the generation of low-carbon electricity, Italy could learn from the approaches of other nations. Notably, nuclear power has been effectively utilized by many countries. France, Ukraine, Slovakia and Belgium, for instance, generate 61%, 58%, 57% and 47% of their electricity from nuclear energy respectively. Additionally, wind power has proven successful in countries like Denmark which generates more than half of its electricity this way. Italy could potentially increase its low-carbon electricity production by investing more in these energy sources. Given the country's geographical location and climate, the development of wind and solar power could be further harnessed.


Regarding the historical trajectory of low-carbon electricity in Italy, there have been significant fluctuations, particularly in hydropower generation. The late 1970s witnessed an increase in hydropower, while in the late 80s and early 90s there was a decline. However, these decreases were followed by gradual recoveries. In 1987, nuclear power witnessed a disappointing decrease in electricity generation. The new millennium saw similarly fluctuating trends with hydropower's ups and downs. From 2008 onwards, despite occasional decreases, there was a noticeable rise in hydropower. The years 2011 and 2012 marked a breakthrough in solar power, with significant increases in solar electricity generation. Despite these advances, the country saw a severe decrease in hydropower in 2022. This emphasises the need for Italy to look at more stable and reliable low-carbon sources, such as nuclear power, for its electricity generation.

Data Sources

For the years 1971 to 1984 the data sources are World Bank and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1985 to 1989 the data sources are Energy Institute and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1990 to 2019 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2020 to 2022 the data source is Ember.