For specific expansion projects, Terna established Round Tables on technical matters. These become the core body for consultation. They manage the siting process including the identification of alternatives and mitigation measures.
The initial step for each consultation process is a detailed stakeholder mapping. It identifies and analyses relevant politicians and local authorities. On this basis, it determines suitable strategies to approach each stakeholder group. While the Round Table serves as a starting point consisting of the same members as the Regional SEA Groups, the stakeholder mapping helps to identify which additional members have to be taken on board throughout the process.
In the first step, a consultation takes place mainly with Round Tables consisting of higher levels of local authorities (Regioni/Autonomous Provices) to find the best corridor alternatives (up to several kilometers wide). To do so, Terna approaches the Regional Round Tables with maps that suggest possible corridors and collects questions and concerns. Questions are then answered and this can also potentially lead to commissioning extra studies.
At a later stage, Round Tables also include lower levels of local authorities (provinces, municipalities and other bodies, such as park authorities). The goal is to identify several feasibility routes (tracks for the power lines) and finally to choose the definitive location of the new infrastructure.
At the most concrete level, a route of 200-300 meters in width is determined. At this stage, direct negotiations on a local level become essential.