Geothermal power provides an answer to the needs regarding environmental protection and sustainable development: it's a source that works constantly, harnessing the Earth's natural heat.
Italy is the country where geothermal energy was first harnessed for industrial purposes and is still one of the main producers of geothermal electric energy in the world. More than one hundred years have gone by since July 4th. 1904, when in Larderello, Tuscany, five lamps were lit by converting into electricity the power of the steam that came from under the ground.
Since then, the history of geothermal power has become a reason of pride for the Italian energy industry and a jewel in the crown of Enel Green Power.
In 2013, the first geothermal plant in Larderello will celebrate its 100th. anniversary: also in Tuscany, Enel's renewable energy company operates one of the largest geothermal group of plants in the world, with 34 facilities totalling about 769 net MW, which produce more than 5 TWh per year, meeting 26 percent of the regional needs and the average consumption of about 2 million Italian families. Additionally, EGP provides heat that warms up more than 8,700 residential and business customers and about 25 hectares of greenhouses.
Enel Green Power is presently committed to strengthen its role in the global scenario, with new initiatives to be enacted abroad. One of them, particularly noteworthy, is taking place in the United States, where the two Stillwater and Salt Wells plants use one of the most advanced technologies that are applied in this sector: binary cycle and middle enthalpy. Various investment programmes are also being defined in several countries in Central and South America.
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Installed capacity from renewables is 9,149 MW, produced by over 715 plants in 16 countries