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pratoallostelvio.jpg, the integrated energy system of Prato allo Stelvio, energyprofessionalnetwork

The Energy Company of Prato allo Stelvio is a cooperative that manages autonomously the energy production and distribution in the town.

I Description of the measure

Title in original language: Società elettrica di Prato allo Stelvio - Energie Werk Prad

Location of CNA: Italy

Municipality / regional entity: Prato allo Stelvio

Category of the experience: Strategy
Type(s) of CNA:

Principal nomination: Technological
Secondary nomination(s): Financial

Thematic field(s):

Principal field: Energy 
Secondary field(s): Land use, Industry & services , Other field: cooperation

Spatial scale: Local
Time & duration:

Start date: 1925
Duration: unlimited

Key word(s): cooperative, decentralized energy production, Energy self reliance, participation.


- To satisfy the energy needs of the town through a decentralized and autonomous integrated energy system - To manage the integrated energy system through a cooparative of citizens.


In 1925, because of the decentralized location of Prato allo Stelvio, the first hydroelectric power plant has been constructed by the Municipality in order to provide electricity to the citizens. The property of the power plant was shared between the citizens. Today, the energy Company owns also plants for energy productions from renewable sources: hyrdoelectric, biomass, biogas, eolic, photovoltaic, cogeneration. The produced surplus of energy (39 %) is sold to the national energy system. The revenues are shared between the citizens and utilized to manage and mantain the plants. Because the aim of this energy system is to provide energy to the citizens and not to produce revenues, the price of the energy is very competitive if compared to the market price of the energy.


The main result of the action is the energy self reliance of Prato allo Stelvio. Technically the system is composed by: - 4 hydroelectric plants for a total of 2MW of installed capacity; - 4 co-generation plants of 1 MW each (biomass mainly coming from local forests) - solar collectors for an installed capacity of 3.3 MW - 2 wind turbines of 1 MW each The cooperative is composed by 90 % of the citizens of the town.

II Assessment criteria

Mitigation effects: Very high

The energy self reliance using renewable energy sources let to drastically reduce (almost 100 %) the emissions of CO2 for energy production.

Impacts on adaptation: Neutral

The impacts on adaptation are considered neutral because the negative impacts produced by the use of local resources are avoided by a good management and governance.

Impacts on environment:

- Landscape: Negative
- Alpine ecosystems / biodiversity: Neutral
- Water / soil / air: Neutral
- "Other": None

The impact on the landscape is evaluated as negative because of the massive installation of photovoltaic panels that could be integrated in the buildings in a better way. Also wind turbines can impact in the landscape. The impact on the biodiversity and water is evaluated neutral because the interactions between the small hydropower plants and by the wind mills and the environment can be considered not significant.

Impacts on society:

- Social justice: Very positive
- Regional / cultural identity: Very positive
- "Other": None

Impact on social justice is considered very positive thanks to the autonomy from external sources of energy. Impacts on cultural and regional identity are considered very positive thanks to the cooperative system that manages in a participatory way the intregrated energy system.

Impacts on economy:

- Employment / job creation: Very positive
- Added value / income: Very positive
- Know how / competitiveness: Very positive
- "Other": None

The action produced new job opportunities thanks to the needs of local technicians for the maintenance of the plants. The average price for energy unit is lower than the market price. The local management and maintenance of the plants produced a local know how on this sector.

Public relations impact and awareness-raising: Very high

The cooperative is composed by 90 % of the citizens. This means that the administration of the integrated energy system is almost public. The awareness of the citizens is very high because they are users and administrators at the same time.

Transferability: High

The action can be easly replicated in other contexts. But different contexts need different solutions that should be planned according to the local characteristics (enrvironmental, social, economical).

Cross sectoral and integrative approach: Very high

This energy system is integrated by interventions on the performances of buildings and with the optimization of the mobility system

Good governance: Very high

The participatory approach guarantees the good governance of the action. The civil society is directly involved in the management of the integrated energy system of the town.

III Executive body and contact information

Executive body: Administration

The municipality of Prato allo Stelvio is a town with 3400 inhabitants located in the Autonomous Province of Bolzano.

Contact person(s):

Name: Municipality of Prato allo Stelvio
Institution: Comune di Prato allo Stelvio
Address: Via Croce 4, I-39026 Prato allo Stelvio, Italy
Phone: +39 0473 616064 
Fax: +39 0473 616722 
Email: [email protected]

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