Futur-e is designed as a circular economy pathway to bring 23 decommissioned thermoelectric power plants and a disused mining area back to life. These plants and mines powered Italy's industrial growth and now, through collaboration with local communities and shared value creation, they can play an important role in new sustainable development and innovation stories.
The way energy is produced is changing. The development of renewable sources, the use of energy efficient solutions and increasingly widespread environmental awareness are bringing about a transformation of the entire energy sector. The traditional model, which saw energy being produced by large power stations, has been superseded by “distributed generation”, in which renewable resource power plants, spread out across the country, play a crucial role. In a scenario where consumption is on the decline and the role of renewables is growing, the moment has come to think about the future of those thermal power stations, which have either already ceased to play a role in the energy system or will soon do so. Enel has chosen to take the lead in the transition towards a more sustainable model with Futur-e, a program to redevelop the sites of 23 thermal power stations that are no longer competitive on the domestic energy market, with approximately 13 GW of total installed power. The goal is to envision new uses for the sites of these power stations, finding solutions and projects that look beyond the limits of the energy sector and which fit the criteria of innovation and of social, environmental and economic sustainability.
Enel is working with local communities to give these power stations a sustainable future. A willingness to listen and engage in dialogue, combined with the principles of circular economy, forms the cornerstones of a process that creates shared value for the local area and its people.
Each plant is a piece of our heritage to be developed. Thanks to their strategic positions and to the presence of structures, buildings, spaces and connections, Futur-e sites represent an industrial heritage that can once again be developed. Enel’s project has been recognized as a best practice in the field of Circular Economy, including by international organizations such as the World Economic Forum and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).
In order to seek out projects and the investors who are willing and ready to make them a reality, Enel has created a competition involving local institutions and technical partners. Potential investors present their proposals to purchase and redevelop sites. These are evaluated by a Jury composed of representatives of Enel, local institutions, and the university sphere. Only projects that meet the criteria of sustainability, innovation and circular economy – and which are considered a suitable fit for their local community’s needs – are allowed to move on to final negotiations for the sale of the site. The sites chosen to participate in the competition include Trino, Porto Tolle, Bastardo, Montalto di Castro and Rossano.
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