The history of the geothermal museum in Larderello

The history of Larderello is unique in the world, linked to a natural phenomenon that has projected Val di Cecina towards a totally sustainable future.

Larderello is a small hamlet in the municipality of Pomarance, famous for its close connection with geothermal energy.

The village is located in what they call the “Devil’s Valley”, known for its boric acid fumaroles and geysers. As early as 270 BC, the Greek writer Licofrone mentions the existence of warm waters with medicinal properties in the region of Etruria and it is very likely that Dante Alighieri imagined Hell after visiting these places.

It was around 1827, however, that the Livorno-born industrialist of French origin François Jacques de Larderel perfected the technique of extracting boric acid from the sludge of the so-called “lagoons” in order to use it in energy production. Larderello thus became one of the first examples of an industrial village in Italy, harmoniously embedded into the landscape through an urban planning project with strong social and cultural undertones. Today there are over 30 power plants in operation and countless routes and parks that allow tourists to enjoy the amazing features of the geothermal territory.

At the Larderel Palace you can visit for free the Geothermal Museum, opened in 1956 and later redesigned by Enel Green Power in 2013 in a completely modern way, which emphasizes the great impact that this renewable energy source can have on the present and more than ever on the future. Inside, the museum path winds through ten rooms that take visitors on an interesting journey to discover geothermal energy, from the Etruscan age to the latest modern mining technologies.

A unique story in the world that makes Val di Cecina a reference point for eco-friendly culture and energy from renewable sources, an example of how man and nature can peacefully coexist, developing an economy respectful of the value and specificity of the territory.

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