+1MWp Scheme

Following a positive assessment by the DGCOM of a new support scheme for large scale PV system and the publishing of the Solar Farm Policy by the Planning Authority, the Agency in conjunction with the Ministry for Energy and Water Management, has launched a competitive process which forms the basis for the allocation of support for PV systems of at least 1MWp.  This competitive process introduces an innovative approach for the allocation of government aid and grid priority for large scale PV, which until recently, could not benefit from existing support mechanisms.

The first round is expected to be adjudicated during Q1 of 2018 with PV installations to be commissioned within a maximum of 2 years, in time for their generation to count towards Malta’s 2020 Renewable Energy target. Meanwhile, the ongoing schemes have ensured that Malta remains on track towards the achievement of the 2020 RES target as confirmed by the country report published by the European Commission as part of the State of the Energy Union Report.

Communal Photovoltaic Farm

A total of 366 applicants have been accepted to form part of the first national communal PV project, which aims at providing the same benefits of having a PV system installed within an individual’s household. Earnings are scheduled on a six month basis and all customers forming part of the scheme were selected on the basis that they do not have access to a private roof and thus cannot install a PV system.

Through the installation of approximately 3700 panels, with a total capacity of 997kWp, a generation of about 1500MWh annually is being predicted. This installation will also contribute in reaching the National Renewable Target.

For the realisation of the project, the Energy & Water Agency has collaborated effectively with the Water Services Corporation, especially in the issuance of the construction tender for the actual PV farm which is situated in Rabat, Fiddien.

Retrofitting Street Lighting

An application to obtain EU funds for the project  “Retrofitting of Street Lighting in Arterial and Distributor Roads in Malta with Energy Efficient LED Luminaries”, costing in total approximately 2.3 million EUR, was approved  at the start of 2017. The project’s main scope is that of reducing energy consumption by approximately 1,600MWh annual primary energy and greenhouse gas emissions by about 640 tonnes. Work on the preparation of the required tenders for the actual implementation of the project has been completed and the tender has been issued. Through this project, 3083 street lamps in arterial and distributor roads will be retrofitted with LEDs.

Replacement of Appliances for Vulnerable People

After conducting circa 1000 house visits nationwide in 2016, the Energy & Water Agency came to the conclusion that the highest number of people benefiting from such visits are people classified as vulnerable in the Maltese social strata. Hence a decision was taken to zoom in on vulnerable people through a tailor made scheme which (i) identified vulnerable households, (ii) conducted home visits and provided advice on how to consume less energy and water, and (iii) if merited (depending on the condition of the appliance) swap the most inefficient appliance with a new model.

The concept of this scheme consists in fusing social and energy policy, being in line with the EU Commission recommendation that energy efficiency is an ideal tool to empower vulnerable energy consumers. Thus, the Agency in collaboration with LEAP carried out 470 house visits, out of which, 277 households qualified for the replacement scheme, as an old and inefficient domestic appliance was found to be used by the individual. This appliance, being a washing machine, an air-conditioning unit or a refrigerator, was replaced with a new energy efficient model, free of charge. Apart from enhancing such families’ standard of living and lowering their energy bills, the measure will also offset 20 tons of C02 emissions through energy savings.

House Visits

The Energy & Water Agency provides an ongoing service in households through home visits carried out free of charge; sharing knowledge with residents on how to lower their energy and water bills through the implementation of small everyday changes with regards to energy efficiency and water conservation.

Anyone interested in fixing an appointment with one of our officers for a site visit, is kindly asked to call on 2229 2575.

PCI 5.19 – Melita TransGas Pipeline

Melita TransGas Pipeline (‘MTGP’) is an approximately 159km pipeline project, from Delimara (Malta) to Gela (Italy), that will end Malta’s gas isolation by connecting the island to the trans-European Natural Gas Network and so, allowing the transportation of gas from the Italian gas network necessary to meet Malta’s gas demand for power generation and future inland market, hence enabling the gasification of the country.

The project poses a means to fulfil EU strategic energy policy goals on energy solidarity between Member States, formation of an Internal Energy Market, diversification of sources, reduced dependency on a single supply source and improved energy security. The pipeline, which can transmit 100% biomethane can also be designed in a way as to transmit 100% green hydrogen thus providing a further alternative for the decarbonisation of the energy sector.

The strategic importance at EU level of MTGP has been recognized by the European Commission, which selected the Project for inclusion in the first list of European Projects of Common Interest (PCI 5.19) in 2013 pursuant to TEN-E EU Regulation No. 347/2013. Subsequently the project has been reconfirmed in the second, third and fourth PCI list, the latter adopted in 2019.

Being a PCI, the Project may benefit from accelerated permit granting, improved regulatory conditions and increased public participation via consultations.  PCIs are also eligible for EU co-financing under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). In fact, the project has already benefited from such grants and more than 4.5 million Euros have already been co-financed for all the preparatory studies.

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