As the EU continues to face mounting pressure over its supply of energy, the European Commission has approved the Italian Government’s plans to help increase domestic production of biomethane, strengthening its energy security and reducing reliance on Russian natural gas.

By approving a new scheme made available through the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), the EU aims to accelerate its REPowerEU plan – under which the EU intends to scale-up biomethane production so it meets over 12% of anticipated gas demand by 2030.  

As part of the country’s strategy to lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the scheme will support the construction and operation of new or converted biomethane production plans, accelerating the green transition and reducing Russian gas dependence.  

Commenting on the announcement, Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice President, in charge of competition policy, said, “The Italian aid scheme we have approved today will boost the EU’s production of sustainable biomethane for use in the transport and heating sectors, in line with the REPowerEU Plan.”  

Partly funded by the RRF, the scheme will involve the creation and operation of new or converted biomethane production plants to support the injection of biomethane into the national gas grid to be used in Italy’s transport and heating sectors.  

Providing the production adheres to the EU Renewable Energy Directive, the project will qualify for aid, including investment grants with a total budget of €1.7bn, and incentive tariffs with an estimated budget of €2.8bn to be paid during the operational phase of the projects for a 15-year period.  

The first call for projects is set to start this year and – to benefit from funding through the RRF – the constructions or conversions of the plants should be completed by 30th June 2026.