Over 2,400 solar panels will produce 1.1 MWh/year at Bluenergy stadium, making it one of Europe’s leading facilities for carbon emission reduction

Udinese Calcio and Bluenergy Group are pleased to announce the start of construction on a cutting-edge photovoltaic system to be fitted to the roof of the stadium owned by the Friuli-based club. Over 2,400 state-of-the-art solar panels will help produce around 3,000 kWh/day, enabling the facility to become partially energy self-sufficient.

The project means further innovation for an avant-garde sports facility which is already seen as a model of design, multi-functionality, safety and sustainability throughout Europe.

The new photovoltaic system is being developed by Bluenergy Group with the support of the Polytechnic University of Milan as energy advisor. In particular, the collaboration focused on identifying the most suitable technology for the specific needs of the project, technical assessment of the system with a view to self-consumption, and analysis of the possibility of adopting other technologies and models to aid the energy transition, such as storage systems and energy communities.

A total of 2,409 solar panels will be built, covering a total surface area of 4,615 m2. The panels will be laid in two parallel sections across the entire stadium roof, integrating seamlessly with the stadium’s architectural design by Studio Casamonti. The project team is also assessing the possibility of adding a 330 kW battery storage park to ensure longer charge and discharge cycles and enhance the potential of this impressive system.

This latest initiative will see Bluenergy and Udinese take a further step towards an increasingly sustainable management of the stadium, whose naming rights were recently acquired by the energy group owned by the Curti family.

Since becoming Udinese’s energy partner in 2018, Bluenergy has provided the club with energy solely from renewable sources, with a saving of 5,620 tonnes of CO2. This achievement, together with the new solar park, takes Bluenergy Stadium ever closer to achieving a balance between anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide and their removal from the atmosphere. However, the aim of the club and its energy partner is to continue on the path of energy transition and eliminate all emissions. Udinese is working to this end as part of the European Club Association (ECA) Sustainability Working Group, drawing up a sustainability roadmap for European football clubs.

“Innovation and environmental awareness continue to play a central role in Udinese Calcio’s decision-making,” Udinese managing director, Franco Collavino said. “This is another reason why we’re thrilled to make our stadium even greener, with the invaluable help of Bluenergy. We have been recognised as the most sustainable club in Italy and the fourth most sustainable in the world. This motivates both us and Bluenergy, one of the key players in Italy’s energy transition, to promote projects that give further momentum to this commitment. Football has an unparalleled presence in mass media and, in addition to our own responsibility to act in a moral way, we have a duty to spread messages that encourage fans to come together in the fight against climate change.”

“We have worked passionately and determinedly on this project and now it is finally a reality,” added Alberta Gervasio, CEO of Bluenergy Group. “Together with Udinese Calcio, we are proud of being the developers of an energy system capable of combining sustainability, energy efficiency and return to the local area. Alongside the numerous activities we carry out daily, participating in this project means that we are even more involved in the sustainable economic development of the local area. Sustainability plays an essential role in the lives of businesses and individuals, and it is a concrete investment both in terms of quality of life and economic gain for the region.”

The Bluenergy Stadium solar energy system, which is expected to come into operation by October 2024, is the latest example of Udinese Calcio’s commitment to sustainability, which has guided every decision relating to the stadium from its very conception. Despite the greater costs, the club chose to build the new facility on the site of the previous one so as not to use additional land. Furthermore, part of the material produced from the demolition of the old stadium was reused. The same philosophy was behind the decision to create a structure that can be used every day of the week, not only on matchday. A meeting centre, the club’s headquarters, offices for businesses and institutions, and shops are already in use, with a museum, a wellness centre and areas for families in the pipeline. Such decisions, together with the support of Bluenergy Group and the construction of the new solar park, make Bluenergy Stadium Italy’s most pioneering football stadium for the elimination of CO2 emissions.

“We’re pleased to have supported Bluenergy Group and Udinese Calcio with this important project,” stated Senior assistant professor at the Polytechnic University of Milan, Simone Franzo. “We hope it can lead the way in enabling further initiatives in the world of football and sport to support Italy’s energy transition. As part of this collaboration, we had the chance to discuss various opportunities sports clubs can take advantage of in the realm of energy transition, as well as the associated environmental and social benefits.”

Bluenergy Group is a multiutility company founded in Friuli Venezia Giulia that has been supplying electric, methane gas and services for individuals, SMEs and large companies throughout northern Italy since 2002. With more than 50 outlets over the country, Bluenergy can provide solutions for every type of customer while promoting responsible use of resources, with complete respect for the environment.

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