Skip to main content

NPF highlights

Download the full NPF documents:

English translation: italy npf.en.pdf

Original language: italy npf.pdf

Download the National Implementation Report 2019:

NPF highlights and 2019 NPF reporting on implementation highlights

On this page, we provide relevant information on the topic of alternative fuels vehicles, infrastructure or support measures as provided in the National Policy Framework (NPF) as well as the 2019 Reporting by the Member States on the NPF implementation.

According to Art. 10(1) of the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive, each Member State shall submit to the European Commission a report on the implementation of its National Policy Framework on a tri-annual basis, and for the first time by or before 18 November 2019. Those Reports must contain a description of the measures taken in the reporting Member State in support of alternative fuels infrastructure build-up. An overview of the Reports notified by [Member State] and received by the Commission to date is provided here below (download section), including an English translation where applicable.

The highlights for all National Policy Framework follow more or less the same structure: we first explain the modelling approach where one has been provided, we then explain the objectives or key focus areas of the NPF and then provide an overview of the key messages for those alternative fuels with distinct infrastructure requirements for which Member States had to develop national targets according to the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive (electricity, hydrogen, LPG, CNG and LNG - therefore not covering for instance biofuels or synthetic fuels. The highlights are extracts from the NPF documents. These highlights should not be considered summaries of the NPFs. For a full and  complete overview, we  advise to read the NPF documents


Highlights 2019 Reporting on the NPF implementation

Italy has not yet submitted the NPF implementation report (due 2019)


Highlights NPF (date of adoption: January 2017)

Supporting innovation and efficiency, reducing dependence on petrol imports and guiding the transition to internal and renewable energy sources in the transport sector can help to achieve the key European objectives of stimulating economic growth, increasing employment and mitigating climate change. Specifically Italy presents one of the highest levels of energy dependence of any European country: 76.9 % in 2013.

Electricity: Provision of shore power for maritime and inland navigation vessels when moored, using a standard interface, may therefore play a fundamental part in reducing emissions in port areas. The benefits would be felt by the wider coastal communities and would allow redevelopment of port areas for tourism and commercial purposes.

From a technical point of view, even though provision of shore power is not particularly complicated, it would nonetheless require the cooperation of all stakeholders (public institutions, ship owners, port authorities, port terminal managers) to achieve a high level of usage so that the investment would be commercially viable and the environmental impact could be reduced as much as possible.

The need for simultaneous supply to a number of cruise ships, requiring very high levels of power, might involve strengthening of local transmission/distribution networks. This might also provide an important opportunity to improve the energy quality of entire urban areas in the various ports. Many Italian ports have drafted or are currently drawing up studies on the economic and environmental impact of electrification of the quays. While all studies agree that electrification of ports contributes to effective reduction of measurable emissions of pollutants, many also perform cost-benefit assessments or analyse the advantages of an integrated approach to energy in port areas. 

The main Italian airports open to commercial traffic have power supply units (400 Hz) located at the aircraft stands.

These facilities are available at over 80 % of existing stands at the three intercontinental gateways (as defined by Presidential Decree No 201/2015 identifying Fiumicino, Malpensa and Venice as airports of national importance).

The stand units are also available to varying degrees in nearly all airports with annual passenger traffic of over 1.5 million persons.

Hydrogen: The scenario for the (note: cumulative)sales of FC cars in Italy assumes introduction of 1 000 cars by 2020, rising to about 27 000 by 2025 (0.1 % of the national vehicle stock), about 290 000 by 2030 (0.7 % of the national vehicle stock). Projections for hydrogen buses predict introduction of 100 buses by 2020, rising to about 1 100 in 2025 (1.1 % of the total stock), about 3 700 by 2030 (3.8 % of the total stock). Currently over 95 % of hydrogen is produced from fossil sources. Centralised production of hydrogen from SMR, at low cost, will assist the initial transition period between 2020 and 2030. Once this initial phase has concluded all production of hydrogen will be by electrolysis.

CNG: In 2014, 72 000 methane-fuelled vehicles were registered in Italy, a 6% rise over 2013, with new methane registrations accounting for more than 5% of the global market. The national natural gas vehicle (NGV) fleet was expected to exceed 900 000 units by the end of 2015. A range of about 20 methane vehicles was available from car manufacturers.

It currently costs about EUR 2 000 to convert a petrol Euro 1, Euro 2 or Euro 3 car to a CNG vehicle, yielding a more environmentally friendly vehicle with lower fuel costs.

CNG-fuelled vehicles on the road in seven regions (Emilia-Romagna, Marche, Veneto, Tuscany, Lombardy, Apulia, Campania) represent over 81%% of the entire national NGV fleet. All of these regions are included in the traffic routes mentioned in the TEN- T guidelines. Setting a 6% methane target for the current fleet by 2025 would be in line with the intention to bring about a gradual reduction of the dependence of road transport on petroleum-derived fuels with a consequent reduction in emissions of CO2 and the other main air pollutants. These objectives seem ambitious and depend on a number of external factors. Natural gas is the cleanest fuel currently available in the medium- and long-range transport sector, ensuring a 10-15% reduction in CO2 over traditional fuel.

LNG: Use of LNG as an alternative to diesel depends both on its financial and environmental sustainability. Financial sustainability depends on lower cost for equivalent energy content, which must at least compensate specific technological costs. The cost of purchasing an LNG vehicle or converting a vehicle to LNG compared to an equivalent conventional diesel vehicle ranges from EUR 15,000 to EUR 60,000.  Use of LNG increases range over CNG, retaining the advantages of reduced emissions as compared to diesel. The liquid state allows 2.5 times more range than the same volume of GNC and little less than half the range of diesel. Eventually, LNG could probably satisfy up to 20% of total transport sector energy needs in Italy. Deployment of infrastructure capable of supporting maximum potential penetration of LNG in downstream applications is extremely capital-intensive, and its development would therefore depend on the following four factors: 1) well-defined and supportive regulatory framework; 2) sufficient availability of LNG in Italy; 3) affordability of LNG as compared to oil alternatives; 4) availability of a full range of LNG vehicles at competitive prices.

The COSTA project (CO2 and other ship transport emissions abatement by LNG) proposed by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport’s Directorate General for Maritime and Inland Waterway Transport, with the technical coordination of the RINA (Italian Maritime Register), presented within the scope of tenders for the TEN-T Core Networks in 2011, was approved by decision of the European Commission C(2012)7017 of 8 October 2012. The countries involved are Italy, as the coordinating partner of the project, Greece, Portugal and Spain. The most important result is the LNG Masterplan for the Mediterranean, the Black Sea and the Atlantic. Assessment of the potential market was achieved taking as a reference point the ‘central’ scenario of the COSTA study, which assumes the existence by 2030 of over 600 vessels fuelled with LNG operating in European short-sea shipping.

The choice of sites for the fixed refuelling stations and location of ship-to-ship LNG refuelling services using dedicated vessels (‘lighters’) and/or road tankers is central to the future use of LNG and requires accurate analysis of maritime demand. Once all external requirements essential for the use of LNG (national registration of vessels fuelled with LNG, equipping of national ports to accommodate vessels fuelled with LNG, possibility of carrying out bunkering, etc.), or are at least conducive to its use (price difference with traditional fuels, availability of incentives, etc.), have been satisfied, an analysis can be made of the factors more directly linked to the vessels themselves that might help to orient choice towards LNG propulsion and consequently to define future demand trends for this type of fuel.