The international health emergency caused by Covid-19, commonly referred to as “Coronavirus”, has evolved rapidly over the past few months. This has led the Italian government to put in place a series of provisions that are both restrictive and of an emergency economic nature, the duration of which it is still impossible to predict at this time, entailing a substantial change in both the internal and external context.
The Acea Group immediately implemented a series of actions to protect all stakeholders, adapting the policies from time to time as the situation evolved.

Key impacts by business sector are shown below.


The health emergency linked to Covid-19, which began in 2020, as well as the subsequent restrictive measures adopted by the government to limit contagion, still in effect, led to an economic impact that heavily affected domestic electricity requirements, with a notable decrease in electricity demand. During 2021, this trend progressively declined and then reversed.
Total electricity fed into the Areti grid (from the national transmission grid, from generation plants connected directly to the Areti grid and from the interconnected E-Distribution grid) increased in 2021 by 1.66% compared to energy fed into the grid in the same period of the previous year.
The maximum power requested by the areti network in 2021 was 1,927 MW, registered at 3:00 pm on 30 July 2021. This amount was around 24 MW (-1.24%) lower than the corresponding figure in 2020, which was 1,951 MW, registered at 3:00 pm on 30 July 2020.

Commercial and Trading

Piazzale Ostiense was allowed only by appointment, managed through a telephone reservation service with a dedicated tollfree number. The areas of the Public Hall are managed suitable to ensure appropriate distancing between customers and operators, whether external or internal to the Hall. To that end, the use of desks placed in the Hall has been suspended and the number of active counters has been reduced. Additionally, a body temperature measuring point has been installed at the entrance and all visitors must sanitise their hands and wear a face mask.
The reopening of the Ostia branch has been postponed until a later date.
Since the onset of the epidemic, customers have been advised of the possibility of managing their accounts via telephone, chat systems, customer areas in the websites and apps on smartphones.
Similar information has been published on the websites (Free Market), (Standard- Offer Market) and on the social networks of the free market (Acea Energia Facebook page), with the tagline “We remain close to you, even from afar” and the hashtag #iorestoacasa (#imstayinghome).
Emails were also sent to customers in the open and standard markets to encourage the use of the customer area on the website.
Additionally, Acea Energia has again begun door-to-door sales and at the Acea Shop sales points, which had been suspended for the entire lockdown period, in compliance with the provisions of the law to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
As an additional measure to strengthen protection, Acea Energia has implemented specific control and prevention processes, which have permitted it to receive Biosafety Trust Certification from the certifying body RINA Services.

Water Segment

Despite the need to stay at home or in any case to limit travel, water consumption has not changed and has remained almost constant due to the combined effect of the reduction in consumption of non-domestic users (industrial, commercial, etc.) and the increase in consumption of domestic users. In large cities there has been a reduction due to the blocking of tourism.

In compliance with the provisions of the regulations pertaining to the Covid-19 health emergency, as well as in compliance with the Resolutions of ARERA, the main preventive and precautionary measures taken by the IWS operators of the Acea Group to ensure continuity and availability of the service in conditions that are safe for the public and operators concerned entail, among other things: 

  • Raising awareness of the use of alternatives to physical branches — web, apps, toll-free numbers, emails through which it is possible to carry out any type of activity — following closure and/ or appointment-based access of physical branches in order to ensure social distancing; 
  • the suspension — from before the provisions of ARERA — of debt recovery activities, in particular service disconnections, as well as the opportunity for users in financial difficulty to request the deferment of the payment terms of expired or expiring bills;
  • the division into instalments of bills due, issued, or with consumption dating to the emergency period.

Additional measures to protect users compatible with current regulatory legislation (Resolutions 580/2019/R/idr and 235/2020/R/ idr) are being shared with the Area Governing Bodies of the territories served.

Environment Segment

The companies of the Environment Segment provide essential public services, and therefore are exempted from the suspension of production established by the Italian ministerial decrees issued over time to combat the epidemiological spread of Covid-19.
During the lockdown there was a temporary reduction in the SRF input at the San Vittore waste-to-energy plant resulting from the treatment of unseparated waste produced in the Rome area, given the substantial drop in tourism and commuting.
However, Acea Ambiente has implemented measures to compensate for the effect, reserving additional and temporary space for the other contributors. In any case, things have currently returned to normal.
There have also been localised reductions of some special waste delivered to some liquid waste treatment platforms of the segment due to the shutdown of manufacturers.
The other plants operated at substantially the same productivity levels as before the spread of the epidemic.
Specific regional ordinances have also identified the treatment plants of San Vittore del Lazio (UL3) and Orvieto (UL4) as facilities for the destination of unseparated waste produced by the infected or quarantined persons in their respective regions (Lazio and Umbria).
Almost all regions have issued ordinances halting separated collection for infected and quarantined persons, with impacts on the type and quantity of urban waste entering the Segment’s facilities. The amounts have not been very large, hence without any significant effects beyond those indicated above.

Safety during the Covid-19 pandemic

Since the beginning of the emergency caused by the spread of the Coronavirus, the Acea Group has implemented prevention and protection measures to manage the risk of Covid-19 contagion.
For the activities carried out by Acea Group Companies, exposure to Coronavirus does not pose a professional risk as employees perform tasks that do not increase their risk compared to the rest of the population.
However, since working activity created the possibility of people coming into contact with others exposed to the virus, a protection strategy was immediately planned aimed at limiting the impact on the organisation based on a risk assessment.

The main measures implemented are as follows:ù

  • dedicated training courses and information materials; 
  • revision of the Risk Assessment Document and emergency plans;
  • reorganisation of working activity; 
  • large-scale teleworking those who can work remotely; 
  • integrated management systems for visitor flows; 
  • screening initiatives for employees; 
  • flu vaccine campaigns (also extended to family members residing in the same place as employees);
  • possibility to receive the Covid-19 vaccine at the Acea HUB; 
  • adoption of all measures for prevention and protection from infection; 
  • application of formal procedures for the periodic assessment of the effectiveness of the measures undertaken, through supervision of the actual implementation of anti-contagion measures (monitoring conduct).

Given the importance of protecting the health and safety of its workers, the Acea Group wanted to provide a concrete sign and a contribution that was not just economic to its workers, by activating — as of the start of the explosion of the pandemic in 2020 — special insurance coverage at no cost for employees (including temporary workers, interns and collaborators in general, which guarantees significant economic support in the case employees or their family members are hospitalised.
The policy, in addition to providing an indemnity and assistance services in the case of contagion and hospitalisation due to Covid-19, also includes a series of medical or psychological consulting services which can be activated and used, even in the absence of contagion and/or hospitalisation.
The Acea Group policy was signed by 29 companies and, at present, covers around 16,000 people including workers and their family members.

Teleworking - keeping people connected, close, active

In 2021, the Agreements with the Trade Unions on measures to contain and combat Covid-19 were confirmed and renewed.
In particular, these agreements are focussed on rules for smart working during the emergency period, flexible management of working hours and remote training, as useful tools to allow for work to be performed in safety, while guaranteeing the maximum possible organisational flexibility.


The Covid-19 pandemic strengthened institutional investor interest in ESG issues, which are increasingly integrated into investment decisions. In particular, an increase has been seen in the financial community’s sensitivity to social and environmental issues, with a growth in investor awareness of the interesting risk/return profile that can be offered by sustainable investments.

Shareholders and lenders

In view of the fact that the characteristics of the businesses managed by the Acea Group, approximately 85% of whose EBITDA is generated by regulated activities, and in light of the chronology of events and measures put into place, the regulatory areas governing the Acea Group’s businesses did not change significantly due to the aforementioned health emergency.
With regard to the financial impact both in the short and medium term, there are no significant uncertainties for the Acea Group in dealing with the “coronavirus” emergency and the effects that this could reasonably cause, also because of the company’s ability to continue to operate as a going concern thanks to the Group’s solid financial structure.