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External cost evaluation and multi criteria analysis to support transmission line planning and design

pubblicazioni - Articolo

External cost evaluation and multi criteria analysis to support transmission line planning and design

L’Italia, come altri paese Europei, si trova ad affrontare il problema di ammodernare e potenziare la rete di trasmissione. I vantaggi, economici, sociali ed ambientali che derivano dallo sviluppo della rete sono normalmente di scala Europea o nazionale. Gli impatti, soprattutto ambientali, sono invece per lo più di scala locale (si pensi all’impatto sul paesaggio o sull’avifauna). Al fine di facilitare la pianificazione, tenendo conto di questa dicotomia, RSE ha sviluppato due metodologie. La prima, basata sull¿analisi a molti criteri, si presta ad essere utilizzata nelle fasi iniziali della pianificazione (scelta dei corridoi, ordinamento della priorità di interventi), la seconda, basata sulla valutazione delle esternalità ambientali, è più adatta a valutare le alternative di progetto (o linea) ed alla comunicazione con la popolazione.

Italy, as many other European countries, is nowadays facing the challenge of expand, rationalize and modernize the national transmission grid. There are technical and economical drivers such as transmission costs reduction and overcoming grid bottlenecks and. of course there is an increasing demand of electric energy. There are also, of course, environmental and social benefit and constraints. All these benefits, even the environmental ones, deal with a European or, at least, national scale. Of course there are other effects of a new infrastructure construction which are merely local: among the environmental issues of the high voltage overhead lines we can mention impact on landscape, on wildlife (especially birds) and on property value. Due to these local impacts, but also to the growing public opinion attention and awareness on environment, it is becoming more and more difficult for TSO to propose and realize new lines and, then, new interconnections. In order to support decision makers in transmission line planning and design, a comprehensive methodology to evaluate and integrate local and Europeanglobal effects, economical benefits and environmental impacts is needed. To this end (thanks to the financing of the Research Fund for the Italian Electrical System under the Contract Agreement between RSE -formerly ERSE- and the Ministry of Economic Development – General Directorate for Nuclear Energy, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency stipulated on July 29, 2009 in compliance with the Decree of March 19, 2009) RSE is developing two different and complementary methodologies: external costs evaluation and multi criteria analysis. External costs evaluation is the process of placing monetary values on environmental impacts. Evaluating external costs means, in other words, translating any environmental impact into an economical damage. If great efforts have been made for the quantification of power generation externalities, the external costs of electricity transport have been somehow neglected and there is need for further researches. The multi criteria analysis comprehend a wide range of decision supporting methods, among which we propose the so – called “classical” multi criteria analysis (MCA). Classical MCA is a rigorous mathematical methodology that allows stakeholders to assign a score to each alternative in transparent way, considering multiple conflicting objective at once. Both methodologies can help in transmission line planning and can be considered complementary. MCA should be used for alternative ranking when stakeholder engagement is possible and desirable. Once the decision has been taken, external cost evaluation can help in dimensioning mitigation and compensation measures.

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