Energy community

Energy communities

Energy communities are aggregations of citizens, companies and entities that together produce, consume and share renewable energy produced by small and medium-sized plants within their local territory.  

Energy communities are helping to introduce the concept of zero-kilometer energy on a large scale: electricity consumers can now aggregate and consume energy produced locally by renewable (mainly photovoltaic) plants, overturning the current paradigm of the energy world.

This new mechanism is made possible by the transposition of the European RED II Directive, first with the entry into force of Decree-Law 162/19 (Article 42bis) and then with Legislative Decree 199/21 and its implementing measures, such as ARERA Resolutions 318/2020/R/eel and 727/2022/R/eel and the 16 September 2020 ministerial decree of MiSE, the Ministry of Economic Development (now MASE, the Ministry of Environment and Energy Security), which introduced an incentive acknowledged by the Energy Service Operator GSE for virtually self-consumed energy.  

There are two types of configuration allowed for the service, both based on condivisione sharing and self-consumption of renewable energy: Renewable energy collective self-consumption groups (CSCs) and Renewable Energy Communities (RECs).

Collective Self-Consumption Groups (CSCs)

A collective self-consumption group (CCS) is a set of at least two self-consumers of renewable energy acting collectively under a private agreement and located in the same apartment block or building.

A self-consumer of renewable energy is defined as an end-customer who produces renewable electricity that he or she can consume, store or sell, provided that this does not constitute his or her primary commercial or professional activity. This configuration was created primarily to allow people living in apartment blocks to benefit from the incentives provided by the legislation, overcoming the technical and physical difficulties involved in installing a personal system for each apartment.

Renewable Energy Community (REC)

Renewable Energy Communities (RECs) are groups of private citizens, entities, companies and administrations who come together to produce, trade and consume renewable energy locally in order to generate environmental, social and economic benefits. The combination of production and consumption is managed as a single ecosystem in which self-consumption of locally produced green energy is the focus of the challenge.

In contrast to collective self-consumption, the participants in an REC can be part of a very large territory (with the same primary HV/MV substation) and must form a non-profit legal entity in order to obtain the incentives. These configurations are very flexible, and are designed to permit broad territorial involvement, allowing the development of projects tailored to specific local needs and to the characteristics of the parties involved.    

Edison sees energy communities as an accelerator of energy transition and independence for territories, through an increase in local renewable energy production and a focus on conscious and efficient consumption.


Accelerating the energy transition of territories

By promoting these configurations, Edison provides members of energy communities with a real and lasting opportunity to reduce their own expenses and environmental impact. In this sense, Edison works to support the country's targets for energy security and decarbonisation, confirming its role as a guide and support for its customers and for the communities and territories in which it operates. .  

Edison has numerous initiatives under way promoting more efficient and responsible use of energy, involving both external communities and territories and the company in a shared path of change aimed at environmental sustainability.  

One example of a concrete project is being carried out by Edison Next, an Edison Group company that accompanies customers and territories along the path of decarbonisation and ecological transition, working alongside seven companies based in Trecenta (Rovigo area) to set up a Renewable Energy Community.  

Another example is the Agrigreen Fondi 2022 project, a participatory and virtuous path in which Edison Energia and Cesab are accompanying the community of Fondi towards a distinctive model of environmental, social and economic sustainability, with the additional goal of creating Italy's largest agricultural REC. The aim of the project is to create a 'Fondi model' which will be replicable nationwide.

Areas in which we innovate

Innovation itself is constantly changing, and in our work at Edison we always keep an eye on the latest developments in the industry, staying on the cutting edge of innovation to safeguard the future.