GAS DEMAND AND SUPPLY IN ITALY

The gas demand in Italy (1) in 2016 has been equal to 70.9 billion of cubic meters, with a growth of about 3.4 billion of cubic meters (+5.0%) from 2016.  The growth is concentrated in the thermoelectric sector, with a growth of about 2.7 billion of cubic meters, and in the industrial sector, with a growth of 0.6 billion of cubic meters.

The table below shows the gas demand in Italy divided for final purposes (2014 and 2015 data are aligned to the National Energy Balance published by MiSE).

(1) Gas volumes expressed in Standard Cubic Meters (Scm), with Gross Calorific Value (GCV) amounting to 38.1 MJ/Scm or 10,57275 kWh/Scm, in the following tables the value of 10,6 kWh/Scm will be represented. Data items expressed in energy terms (MJ) are obtained multiplying physical cubic meters with relevant calorific value.

 

TABLE 1: NATURAL GAS DEMAND IN ITALY
 

B Scm @ 10,6 kWh/Scm 2014 2015 2016

Abs. Var.

2016 vs 2015

Var%

2016 vs 2015

Residential and Commercial 25,66 28,97 28,87 -0,10 -0,4%
Power Generation 17,88 20,62 23,31 2,69 13,1%
Industry 14,50 14,01 14,64 0,63 4,5%
Other (*) 1,82 1,97 2,05 0,08 4,1%
Consumption and losses 2,05 1,96 2,01 0,05 2,6%
TOTAL DEMAND 61,91 67,52 70,88 3,36 5,0%

(*) Including consumptions for Agriculture and Fishing, Chemical synthesis, automotive and bunkering

 

The supply of natural gas in Italy in 2016 amounted to 70.9 billion cubic meters, an increase of approximately 3.4 billion cubic meters (+5.0%) compared to 2015. Natural gas imports in 2016 amounted to 65.1 billion cubic meters, representing approximately the 92% of the total and with an increase of import requirements from the previous year by 7% , equal to 4.2 billion cubic meters in absolute value. The increase in imports has helped to offset the reduction in domestic production, which in 2016 recorded a total volume of 5.6 billion cubic meters with a reduction of 13%, about 0.9 billion cubic meters in absolute value.

 

TABLE 2: NATURAL GAS SUPPLY IN ITALY

 

B Scm @ 10.6 KWH/Scm 2014 2015 2016 Abs. Var. 2016 vs 2015 Var% 2016 vs 2015
Import 55,36 60,82 65,06 4,24 7,0%
National Production (*) 6,89 6,43 5,57 -0,86 -13,4%
Delta storage (**) -0,86 -0,31 -0,20 0,11 -35,5%
TOTAL AVAILABILITY OF NATURAL GAS 61,42 66,94 70,43 3,49 5,2%
Export (***) -0,28 -0,27 -0,26 0,01 -3,7%
Gas injected into the regional network of other operators 0,05 0,05 0,04 -0,01 -20,0%
Other (****) 0,73 0,80 0,68 -0,12 -15,0%
GROSS AVAILABILITY 61,91 67,52 70,88 3,36 5,0%

(*) Doesn't include the self-consumption of gas wells
(**) Delta withdrawal (+) and injection, including gross consumption for withdrawal/injection
(***) Includes transits and exports to San Marino Republic
(****) Includes consumptions of LNG terminals, consumptions of storage compressor stations and treatment station of production

 

A gradual growth of about 0,9% every year is foreseen for italian natural gas demand during the ten years period 2016 - 2035, with a more sustained growth rate in the first decade (1.1%).  

The increase in demand is supported by the forecast of recovery of macroeconomic framework and demand for electricity, and by the possibility to activate further forms of demand support such as biomethane and the progressive increase in the use of natural gas in transport activities. By analyzing in more detail the sectoral trend of gas demand, consumption in the civil and industrial sector is expected to decrease (around -1%) while are expected to increase (+ 1.5%) the thermoelectric consumptions because of the increase of demand of electricity and the decrease of the use of fossil fuels (oil and coal), and consuptions of transport sector (+14%) because of the increase of natural gas vehicles and the use of LNG in heavy and maritime transport.

The following table shows annual demand for each market sector.

 

TABLE 3: NATURAL GAS AND BIOMETHANE DEMAND FORECAST IN ITALY

 

B Scm @ 10.6 KWH/Scm 2016 2020 2026 2030 2035

VAR. % average annual

change 2016-2026

VAR. % average annual

change 2016-2035

Residential and Commercial 28,9 28,2 27,2 25,9 23,8 -0,6% -1,0%
Power Generation 23,3 23,2 28,2 31,5 31,2 1,9% 1,5%
Industry 14,6 14,1 13,1 12,4 11,6 -1,1% -1,2%
Other (*) 2,1 3,6 8,3 11,4 14,3 14,9% 10,8%
Consumption and losses 2,0 2,1 2,5 2,7 2,6 2,1% 1,5%
TOTAL DEMAND 70,9 71,3 79,2 83,8 83,5 1,1% 0,9%

(*) Including consumptions for Agriculture and Fishing, Chemical synthesis, automotive and bunkering


Gas imports will continue to be the primary source to satisfy the gas demand and they will be able to increment always more effectively thanks to the growth of the transit role played by the Italian gas system, supported by the developments projects of import and export of the Italian network.

 

TABLE 4: NATURAL GAS AND BIOMETHANE SUPPLY FORECAST IN ITALY

High case Scenario

B Scm @ 10.6 KWH/Scm 2016 2020 2026 2030 2035

VAR. % average annual

change 2016-2026

VAR. % average annual

change 2016-2035

Import 65,1 66,1 75,1 76,8 75,5 1,5% 0,8%
National Production 5,6 6,2 9,2 12,1 13,1 5,2% 4,6%
Export -0,3 -1,1 -5,1 -5,1 -5,1 34,4% 16,8%
TOTAL AVAILABILITY (*) 70,4 71,3 79,2 83,8 83,5 1,2% 0,9%

(*) not including stock variation

 

The planned development of transmission capacities for the ten-year period set by Snam Rete Gas allows to meet both the forecast demand in Italy and exports. In particular, it is forecasted the start of  export at the exit points to the north from 2019 and an increase in export volumes of up to 5 billion cubic meters by 2023.

The following chart illustrates the forecast for transmission capacity and utilization rate over the 2017 – 2035 period, in specific:

  • total capacity is the aggregated technical firm capacity for all entry points interconnected with foreign pipelines and LNG plants, including new capacity;
  • utilization rate is the ratio between import supply (including both domestic consumptions and export) and total capacity.

 

FIGURE 1: ANNUAL COVERAGE 2017 - 2035
Fig 1 eng