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Italian electricity consumption falls sharply due to Corona measures

Eylert Ellefsen
Archived blog post. This blog post has been transferred from our previous blogging platform. Links and images may not work as intended.

Measures to combat the Corona epidemic is starting to have a bigger impact on electricity demand across Europe, and in especially in Italy, than the financial crisis in 2008.

EQ believes that the consumption started to drop noticeably in Italy during last week due to a reduction in industrial and commercial activities. The industrial sector represents nearly 40% of overall consumption in Italy.

The consumption effect was clearly visible during last week, which ended 8% lower than in a Corona-free scenario. And for yesterday (Monday) we have calculated a demand drop of about 15% (ref. chart below).

The “Corona-free” curve shows what normal demand would have been during the same period in the absence of corona containment measures:

It’s difficult to forecast the short-term impact on demand from corona-measures, but for Italy we think that we may soon see a 20% reduction.

During the financial crises in 2008 the impact was around 6% reduction on yearly basis (2009 compared to 2007). The corona containment measures are likely to have a more profound effect on consumption, but hopefully also more short-lived.

Electricity consumption across Europe is expected to fall as communities and countries in different ways are slowing down normal industrial and social activity. EQ's focus is to monitor the consumption development in the most corona-exposed countries, starting with Italy.

But what about other countries like France and Spain where strong corona-measures have been introduced, somewhat like in Italy? We do already observe a reduction in consumption of about 5 % in these countries so far, but demand is likely to drop further as stringent new measures start to bite.

EQ will continue to closely monitor the demand situation across Europe in the time ahead, providing studies blog posts etc. as the Corona-effects become more clear.

For continues updates on supply and demand, check out our online EQ services.

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