Osborne Clarke assisted the Province of Lecco in the legal assessment - for the purpose of the related declaration of public interest - of the first proposal in Italy for the realisation of a Renewable Energy Community (REC) in project finance to be implemented at provincial level, with a total value exceeding Euro 110 million.

In particular, Osborne Clarke advised on the structuring of the complex initiative, as well as in the discussions with the private operator that presented the proposal, functional to the inclusion in the submitted proposal of the changes necessary for its approval, and this also in consideration of the mandatory allocation of the risks connected to the interventions to be carried out in public-private partnership (PPP).

Osborne Clarke will also assist the Province in the subsequent tender procedure regulated by the new Public Contracts Code (legislative decree no. 36/2023), which is expected to be launched soon.

This is the first PPP initiative related to the establishment and management of an REC operating across the entire territory of a province, aimed at the full implementation of the recent Ministry of the Environment and Energy Security Decree no. 414/2023 published on 23 January 2024, with a view to stimulating the creation and development of Renewable Energy Communities and widespread consumption of self-generated energy in Italy.

The extension of the REC to the entire provincial territory is also aimed at involving municipalities with fewer than 5,000 inhabitants, to whom specific forms of incentives and non-repayable financing are reserved by the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, which will be able to join the same REC subject to the conditions outlined by the initiative. In this way, adhesion to the REC is also promoted for municipalities unable to autonomously provide the full financial coverage necessary for the construction of plants for the production of energy from renewable energy sources.

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