New Guidelines on White Certificates Summary of the key points
Effective date and transitional regime
The new mechanism applies to all projects submitted starting from 4 April 2017 (date of entry into force of the DM). Projects approved or submitted before such date are regulated by the old mechanism.
The DM also sets forth a 180 days transition period during which the former mechanism may apply to specific projects at a certain (advanced) stage of completion.
Projects eligible for white certificates scheme
A distinction is made between applicant and holder.
The applicant: (i) must meet (for the entire useful life of the project so called "U" factor, see below) the requirements provided for under art. 5; (ii) is the entity who can submit the request to the public authority ("GSE") to obtain the white certificates (with proxy from the holder if applicant and holder are not the same entity).
The holder: (i) is the entity who makes the investment; (ii) is the entity in whose name white certificates are awarded by GSE; (iii) may apply for white certificates also in the name of the applicant (in such case the model contract shall be signed by both of them, and they are jointly liable).
The contractual relationship between GSE and the holder (+ the applicant, if holder and applicant are not the same entity) is regulated by a model contract (see "model contract" box below).
Artt 2 and 5
In order to be eligible for the white certificate scheme, projects shall: (i) create additional savings (as proven by suitable documentation); (ii) be implemented by the same holder, at one or more facilities; (iii) their starting date shall follow the submission of the request to access the mechanism with GSE; (iv) fall within the scope of the works listed in Table 1, Annex 2 of the DM; (v) be drafted and filed with GSE pursuant to Annex 1, along with the documents specified in Annex 1.4; (vi) their starting date shall follow the date of submission of the application for white certificates (but shall fall within 12 months from the date of approval of the PC projects see below).
Art. 2; Annex 2
Methods for assessment of the
- final balance method ("PC", "progetto a consuntivo"): additional savings are measured both before and after the intervention works. For such projects: (i) a share of additional savings not less than 10 TEP in the first 12 months of monitoring is required; (ii) the project starting date must fall within the first 12 months from the date of approval of the PC; (iii) specific rules are set forth to determine baseline consumption (see box baseline);
- standard method ("PS", "progetto standardizzato"): (i) a share of additional savings not less than 5 TEP in the first 12 months of monitoring is required; (ii) PS are allowed for a specific kind of interventions whose list is still under approval by the Ministry (but new types of projects may be submitted for evaluation by the public authority); (iii) savings are measured in compliance with a model and a measurement program approved by GSE; (iv) as to the baseline: see box baseline.
Art. 9; Annex 1points 1
Request for verification
and certification of savings
Requests for verification and certification of savings with either the final balance method ("RC", "richiesta a consuntivo") or the standard method ("RS", "richiesta standardizzata"): (i) must be submitted within 120 days from the end of the monitoring period and must refer to a one-year monitoring period (shorter monitoring periods are admitted only for projects with high savings, and upon GSE approval); (ii) are evaluated by GSE within 90 days from the application (save for requests for supplements).
Art. 7; Annex 1
GSE has a 90-days period to evaluate the project (save for any supplements). The former silent-approval procedure is no longer envisaged.
Both in the PC and in the PS, the prior consumption monitoring shall be carried out in the 12 months before
implementation of the project, with daily tests (unless the applicant proves that lower frequency and duration of tests are in any event sufficiently representative to calculate the baseline)
Art. 2; Annex 1
The DM introduces the model contract to regulate the contractual relationship between GSE and holder (and between GSE, holder and applicant, if holder and applicant are not the same entity).
The draft model contract will be approved with decree of the Ministry for the Economic Development in the 30 days following DM entry into force.
Artt 2 and 5
The DM removes the Tau factor and introduces the (less favourable) K factor.
Useful Life (U)
It is predetermined depending on the type of intervention. It cannot in any event exceed 10 years.
Only renewable energies for "non-electric" use will continue to benefit from the white certificate mechanism, upon condition that they create additional savings.
Combination with other The DM allows combination of white certificates with other non-state incentives destined to the same projects (within
the limits set forth by European regulations).
Verification and control activities
GSE monitors the interventions through document assessment or on-site inspections; it may carry out such activities during the entire useful life of the project. The term for completion of the control procedure is set in 180 days; the inspection shall be notified with at least a prior 2 weeks' notice; holder and applicant are entitled to submit written briefs and documents.
If any non-compliance is found, GSE may apply the following sanctions: rejection of the application for white certificates; revocation of the white certificates obtained; recovery of the amounts already granted. If GSE finds any non-compliance affecting the calculation of incentives, it may re-determine the number of certificates, revoke the certificates granted in excess or their monetary equivalent (these calculations may be carried out also on a purely conservative basis).
Decisions and decrees Operational guidelines (within 60 days from the DM); list of model interventions for the PS; draft of model contract Art. 5, 9
to be adopted
(within 30 days from the DM); FAQ.