Clean Energy Needs More than Financial Backing

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One talks a lot about environmental impact, eco-sustainability, renewable energy, new technologies, bio-dynamics, true wines and etc…. The future is undoubtedly headed in this direction. Suddenly, we are all becoming eco-sensitive and eco-experts; around town we meet people who a little while ago were selling insurance and now instead are trying to convince themselves of being solar panel experts. Perhaps we are moved by thoughts about civilization and we want a more intelligent future for our successors…or it is just a question of cash?

Global politics, partly due to economic need, partly because the petroleum supply is reaching its end, see salvation in green economics. But do we really believe it?

Let me offer you a striking example, which for Italians is pure science fiction: Norway is one of fifteen nations which produce the most natural gas and petroleum in the world, but 80% of the energy that they use for heating is produced by hydroelectric plants located on the fjords. This rational system is light years away from our country’s way of thinking.

Care for the environment must be a behaviour taught starting at school, examples must be brought from the civic sense of the working class, not from financial backers that attempt to purchase our habits. Obviously, economic assistance helps both the endeavour and citizens, but I am afraid that, as always in our country, the money will be used because it was given and not because one has a precise project in mind.

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My company has, since 2003, used as its heating system a heat pump (a kind of fridge) supplied by electric energy, which permits me to heat up and cool down the local offices and thermo-condition the wine producing cellar. This aspect is fundamental for avoiding thermal ranges, avoiding further oxidation during the period of aging. Two years ago we integrated a series of solar panels into the system, and these contribute to the provision of energy to the heat pump. Currently, 35% of the energy used by the Rivetto company is produced by the sun. The objective is obviously total energy independence. Moreover, for 2011 we were chosen as a pilot agency at the regional level for experimenting along with the Polytechnic of Turin, with a machine that utilizes the seeds from the vineyards to produce biomass energy.

It is the environment in Langa that makes our wines unique in all the world, we must therefore respect it. Our company has begun to do this is a concrete way.