Category Archives: NEWS
Electric Vehicles and charging stations: best practices form Europe and Italy. Changing the behavior for a cleaner future
The 2nd Regional Stakeholder Meeting conference of EV Energy, hosted by Partner EUR S.p.A in its facilities in Rome last 19th of October 2017, involved experts and key stakeholders from Greenit Amsterdam region, Flevoland Province, Stockholm County Council, Chamber of Commerce of Barcelona, Kaunas University of Technology and the Municipalities Association of Anci Lazio, including representatives of ENEL S.p.A., GLS Italy, UMPI and the Mobility Service Agency of the City of Rome.
They all agreed that many cities and regions are setting tougher environmental goals than national governments to limit air pollution and to achieve the goals of the 2015 Paris climate agreement to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
Zero emissions areas could mean more parks, pedestrian areas or roads where only electric powered vehicles could enter to make cities more attractive places to live. On this topics, Mariarosaria Marziali in charge of communication by Anci Lazio interviewed some attendees.
Marco Ghetti from UMPI Italian private company declared that “unfortunately e-infrastructures are not ready yet in our cities but existing infrastructures and assets can be exploited and turned into a e-mobility service network for EVs, starting from public lighting. “This is what UMPI can do and for sure in the next 15 years big part of the mobility transition will be completed”.
Donatas_Černiauskas from a Lithuanian ESCO company said that his ESCO is signing agreements with city authorities to develop charging system for EVs. However, there is still a relevant criticism as the National governments do not have yet target and goals for EVs and we don’t know yet who can manage the process of the mobility transition.
More optimistic was Cristian Bardaji from the Chamber of Commerce of Catalunia because a Strategic Plan 2016-2019 for the development of charging infrastructure for EVs has been implemented in Catalunia. With a budget of € 6 Million in 3 years Catalunia is implementing 100 charging stations to fast roads, 400 semi-fast charging stations and 25.000 charging points linked. Therefore, there are very good news from Catalunia. Cristian Bardaji explained that this choice of the Region is due to the fact that citizens ask for clean air.
Enrico Tagliaferri Manager of the Italian enterprise Share’ngo for Rome is optimistic as well about the future of the electric mobility in Italy. The plan of Share’ngo free-floating car sharing service is to introduce 2.000 new EVs in Milan and Rome. Share’ngo wants to create its own charging stations very soon, in order to quickly encounter the needs of the consumers.
Alberto Piglia, Head ofe- Mobility of Global Business Line e-Solutions for Enel strongly has believed in electric mobility since 2008. Enel implemented the first charging stations in Pisa in 2009. Today it is even possible to drive from Rome to Milan, thanks to the new fast charging stations installed in the highway last September. The investment plan of Enel is to install 7.000 new fast charging stations in Italy very soon. In addition, Enel to create a digital intelligence in order to manage the “batteries with wheels” in the best way to balance the power.
Michael Erman, Regional planner at County Council Stockholm, is optimistic as well. Stockholm is one of the most ambitious cities in EU to become one of the world’s leading clean vehicle cities by 2030. To achieve this, the City is developing e-infrastructures. 500 charging points on-street will be installed by 2020. Michael declared that the first objective must remain “local transport to be strengthened” while the second one is to allow people to buy EVs instead of polluting cars. But the EVs must be less expensive! An ongoing study in Sweden is the electrification of the public fleets (buses) that implies the implementation of charging facilities in all the
country. Michael concluded by saying that “Public transport and IT are very important in the context of the mobility transition”.
Remarkable is the “self-experimentation” of Hugo Niesing who is the designer, operator, subject, analyst, user and reporter of the experiment. From 2013 onward Hugo Niesing has successfully experimented a smart energy management in his house, producing and consuming energy, together with energy storage in an EV. He installed a 30m2 of solar panels, attaching an EV with available battery capacity of 10Kwh. Prior to the V2H installation and only with the aid of solar panels, 26% of the energy instantly consumed by the household came directly from this renewable energy source. But with the addition of the EV in the energy system, this self-sufficiency increased to 60%. This experiment paves the way for large scale adoption of renewable energies in urban environments. It is in fact in progress in a neighborhood of Amsterdam: the EVs act as energy storage.
Therefore, Hugo Niesing is completely right to be very optimistic regarding the mobility transition. It would be enough to follow his example.
The City of Rome is strongly involving stakeholders in shaping the city’s future, particularly, regarding the energy transition.
In fact, stakeholders and organisations will be very soon involved in key strategic decision-making to help the City administration of Rome to install infrastructures for charging electric vehicles.
On the other side, it will be easier for the local stakeholders wishing to install electric infrastructures in Rome. This because the City of Rome will renounce to request them the taxes regarding the “occupation of public land” as well as the building permit.
In addition, The City Administration decided to increase the possibility of commercial surface inside the areas of electric charging distributors. This opportunity will repay the investment of the stakeholders on the electric charging points.
But there’s more: an App will be also created in which citizens can propose to the Local Authority the areas of the city where to install electric infrastructures. Then, the City Administration will check the availability of the areas to be equipped with electric charging stations.
The City Assembly Resolution 92/2017 containing the Rome’s Plan of Electric Mobility 2017-2020 was in fact approved last 19 of April 2018.
The Resolution regards the “Regulations for the construction and management of public access systems to be used exclusively for the recharging of vehicles powered by electricity”.
The Rome’s City Councilor for Mobility, Linda Meleo, explained during the City Assembly that the Plan is an important act, because it introduces the first Electric Mobility Plan which defines addresses on what and how electric mobility must be implemented. In addition, it defines the new horizontal and vertical signage linked to the stalls for charging electric vehicles and introduces a framework of rules for the installation of electric infrastructures in the city.
The Plan aims to a minimum target that is to provide the capital city with at least 700 electric charging points, distributed in a capillary way also in the most peripheral areas, by 2020. Through this Plan, Rome intends to achieve more ambitious objectives in order to become an attractive pole of electric mobility. Six macro areas have been identified, going from the city centre to the peri-urban areas, in order to ensure the installation of more electric charging points: from the service stations of the “GRA”, the Rome’s ring road, to the ancient Aurelian Walls, in order to meet the needs of citizens, so as to allow citizens to recharge their own vehicle wherever they are.
The regulations for the implementation of the electric infrastructures in Rome establish, as follows:
• Subjects entitled to submit an application for the implementation of charging electric points
• Technical constraints for the applications
• Technical documentation and building permit procedures
• Duration of the building permit and guarantees
• Technical characteristics of the electric infrastructures
• Stall signaling
• Management, information and integration constraints; monitoring and penalties
• Exemption from building permit charges
• Transitional rules for the managers of the charging stations activated before the entry into force of the Regulation
This Regulation fits perfectly with the actions undertaken by EV ENERGY project, such as the meetings with stakeholders carried out during 2017-2018.
Exhibit Space at the World’s Largest Seafood Trade Event Continues to Grow
Seafood Expo Global will highlight companies of fresh, frozen and value-added fish and seafood as well as processed and packaged fish and seafood in halls 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, the Patio and part of hall 8. Halls 4 and 8 will host Seafood Processing Global representing every aspect of seafood processing, including: processing and packaging materials and equipment, refrigeration/freezing equipment and supplies, primary and secondary processing equipment, hygiene control/sanitation and seafood industry services.
Exhibiting companies will present their products to global buyers, including restaurants, supermarkets, hotels, catering services, importers, distributors, wholesalers, seafood markets and other retail and foodservice companies.
Seafood Excellence Global Awards
On the evening of Tuesday 24 April, Diversified Communications will host the Seafood Excellence Global awards reception, where the winners of the Best Retail Product and the Best Hotel/Restaurant/Catering (HORECA) Product will be announced. The awards recognize the best seafood products represented at the exposition. Special awards will also be presented for Innovation, Convenience, Health and Nutrition, Retail Packaging and Seafood Product Line. All participant entries and winning entries will be on display at the Seafood Excellence Global stand in the Patio at the expo.
Probably the best seafood fair in the world number 1
Patrick Grignard – Noelle Gosset
Source from Diversified Communications
“The European Union has always been on the side of Lebanon and the Lebanese people. A strong and resilient Lebanon is in our collective interest, in the interest of the entire region. Lebanon is a mirror of the whole Middle East, of its diversity, complexity and beauty. With this new package, the European Union reconfirms its support to the Lebanese economy, for the benefit of the Lebanese people, and encourages the Government of Lebanon to pursue the path of structural reforms it has started to undertake.” Said High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini.
The European Union has announced a package of up to €150 million to support the revitalisation of the Lebanese economy as part of its longstanding commitment to the economic development of Lebanon.
This support could generate up to €1.5 billion loans for Lebanon until 2020, on condition that the country’s financial institutions identify and propose projects that are bankable and adopt relevant reforms. This package includes up to €50 million in grants funding that could be mobilised in each of the coming three years (2018-2020) to provide technical assistance and ensure a sufficient level of concessionality of loans.
Commissioner for Enlargement Negotiations and Neighbourhood policy Johannes Hahn added: “The EU contribution is a signal of our support for the Government of Lebanon, whose tasks include now taking forward a road map of structural reforms to boost economic development in the country for the benefit of all. We will support and accompany this effort. Through the External Investment Plan, the EU is ready to extend up to €150 million in grants that could be used to generate up to €1.5 billion of concessional lending for investment in Lebanon over the next three years provided relevant projects are put forward and the necessary reforms are adopted”.
The package was announced today at the CEDRE conference in Paris, an international donor meeting in support of Lebanon’s economy. This will be made available in the framework of the European External Investment Plan (EIP), a comprehensive and ambitious EU plan which encourages investment in our partner countries for the promotion of inclusive growth, job creation and sustainable development.
Climate change and the resulting consequences are among the biggest challenges of our times. Mitigation and adaptation are increasingly becoming priorities for the local governments of the Lazio region. This is the reason why Anci Lazio, the Lazio Region Association of Cities and Municipalities, is actively promoting the transition to more sustainable practices, through the implementation of diverse EU funded projects under the European Regional Development Fund, such as EV Energy , Regio-Mob  and Local4Green. These projects are showing that the transition is technically achievable and economically feasible. The last Stakeholder meeting that took place in Rome last January 12th, 2018, delved into the current status of Lazio’s policy environment, with a particular interest in initiatives aiming to expand the Lazio’s renewable energy production and use. The main goal of Anci Lazio was to raise awareness, understanding between stakeholders and finally to catalyse action.
From the analysis conducted by Anci Lazio the way energy needs in Lazio region are being met is changing rapidly. These changes are in response to new opportunities – such as renewable energy and smart technologies to reduce emissions and extend energy access. Just think of the development of the private sector in the field of electric car sharing and e-bike sharing in Rome and in the Lazio region, which implies new needs for different forms of energy supply.
The traditional centralized model of linear power generation and delivery through limited market or monopoly conditions is going to give way to a more diverse, dynamic and complex system with multiple actors and multi-layered energy, information and money flows. Such new more dynamic system is the so-called Distributed Energy Systems (DES) which can deliver significant economic, social and environmental co-benefits through better system resilience and efficiency, including lower cost grid balancing, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and affordable extension of grids to unconnected communities.
Energy infrastructure in Italy is ageing and requires significant investment to replace and repair. A crucial issue is, therefore, the need of new policy goals aimed at the modernization of the e-infrastructure networks together with the e-storage, as shown in the good practices identified by the partnership of the Ev Energy project.
What emerges from these good practices is that EU countries have set targets for electric vehicles (EVs) development in recent years and are employing more and more a number of policies to achieve environmental objectives and alleviate the energy pressure, as EVs have prominent advantages for reducing CO2 emissions and alleviating the dependence on fossil fuel consumption in the transport sector.
In the same way, Lazio region needs more policies, such as financial incentives, technology support and charging infrastructure, to promote broader range use of EVs.
Apart from monetary incentives such as tax credits or direct subsidies, there exist other measures that could boost EV sales, or at least, could clear some obstacles out of the way that prevent potential EV buyers from a purchase. These include the improvement of the charging infrastructure, road-tax exemptions, and traffic regulations such as the free use of bus lanes or parking areas.
Therefore, policy measures are strongly and urgently needed in Lazio region to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission and promote the acceptance of EVs.
To follow the EV Energy project:
 EV-ENERGY project runs from 1 January 2017 to 30 June 2021 under Interreg Europe Programme. The project aims to pave the way for a transition from fossil driven energy towards fair priced, decarbonised, clean and integrated resources and mobility systems in urban areas.
 REGIO-MOB project runs from 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2020 under Interreg Europe Programme. REGIO-MOB partners expect to contribute to the consolidation of sustainable mobility in their regions by improving their policies performance as a result of a shared learning process. This improvement will be materialised through the development of regional mobility strategies with an holistic approach (environmental, economic & social factors). https://www.interregeurope.eu/regio-mob
 Local4Green project runs from 1 November 2016 to 30 April 2020 under MED Programme. It is an innovative project that supports local authorities-municipalities to define and implement innovative local fiscal policies in order to promote renewable energy sources (RES), in the public and private sector and households. https://www.local4green.interreg-med.eu
 The outcomes of the stakeholder meeting are used to create complex, dynamic, highly quantitative models which will be discussed with government institutions in order to develop an Action Plan for the Lazio Region that will be illustrated in a next article.
“With today’s proposal we are granting citizens and businesses in non-euro area countries the same conditions as euro area residents when making cross-border payments in euro. All Europeans will be able to transfer money cross-border, in euro, at the same cost as they would pay for a domestic transaction. Today’s proposal will also require full transparency in currency conversion when consumers are paying by card in a country which does not have the same currency as their own.” Said Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President responsible for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union.
The European Commission is today proposing to make cross-border payments in euro cheaper across the entire EU. Under current rules, there is no difference for euro area residents or businesses if they carry out euro transactions in their own country or with another euro area Member State.
Today’s proposal aims to extend this benefit to people and businesses in non-euro countries. This will allow all consumers and businesses to fully reap the benefits of the Single Market when they send money, withdraw cash or pay abroad. All intra-EU cross-border payments in euro outside the euro area will now be priced the same – with small or zero fees – as domestic payments in the local official currency. Moreover, the Commission is today proposing to bring more transparency and competition to currency conversion services when consumers are buying goods or services in a different currency than their own.
Consumers and businesses in the euro area already benefit from very low fees for cross-border payments in euro, thanks to the introduction of the cross-border payments regulation in 2001. Under current rules, there is no difference for euro area residents or businesses if they carry out euro transactions in their own country or with another euro area Member State. Today’s proposal aims to extend this benefit to people and businesses in non-euro countries whenever they travel or pay abroad, putting an end to the high cost of intra-EU cross-border transactions in euro.
In particular, this proposal provides that fees charged for cross-border payments in euro are the same that would be charged for equivalent domestic payments in the local currency. This will bring down fees to a few euro or even cents. For example, a cross-border credit transfer in euro (EUR) from Bulgaria will be priced the same as a domestic Bulgarian lev (BGN) credit transfer. This is a major change, as fees for a simple credit transfer can be exorbitant in some non-euro area Member States (up to EUR 24 for a transfer of EUR 10!). Today’s hefty fees are an obstacle to the Single Market as they create barriers to cross-border activities of households (buying goods or services in another currency zone) and businesses, in particular SMEs. This creates a major gap between euro area residents who benefit from the single currency, and non-euro area residents who can only make cheap transactions within their own country.
Today’s proposal will also bring about transparency on payments that involve different Union currencies. At the moment, consumers are usually not informed or aware of the cost of a transaction that involves a currency conversion. The proposal will therefore require that consumers are fully informed of the cost of a currency conversion before they make such payment (e.g. with their card abroad, be it a cash withdrawal at an ATM or a card payment at a point of sale, or online). This means they will be able to compare the costs of different conversion options to make a fair choice. Recent findings show that consumers have been complaining about dynamic currency conversion practices – i.e. paying abroad in their home currency – and asking for their ban after having found that they were losing out in the majority of the cases studied. The lack of necessary information to make the best choice often results in consumers being unfairly led towards the more expensive currency conversion option. The European Banking Authority will be tasked with drafting the necessary Regulatory Technical Standard to implement this enhanced transparency.
The legislative proposal will now be submitted to the European Parliament and Council for adoption.