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Vatican fortifies clean energy commitment

The adoption of solar energy was encouraged by Pope Benedict XVI. Mauro Villarini Engineer, Vatican Technical Services “This idea was inspired by points made in a speech by the current Pope Benedict XVI and his predecessor John Paul II made. Always with the goal of respecting creation, the environment and certainly the production of clean energy.” Two years after renewable energy made its way to the Vatican, the Holy See released a book entitled "The Energy of the Sun in the Vatican," ; a book about the Vatican?s solar power initiatives. Mauro Villarini Engineer, Vatican Technical Services “It?s difficult to make an economic speech because it depends on the market. In comparison to Italy, the Vatican saves about 30 or 40 million euros a year from solar cooling. This means that clean energy also means getting a financial return. In addition to doing the right thing for the environment, it also helps the wallet.” These solar panels are installed in three areas of the Vatican. The most important, is the football- field-sized roof of the Paul VI audience hall, which utilizes three types of energy: thermal, electrical and cooling, used to produce light, heat and cool the building. Pier Carlo Cuscianna Director, Servicios Técnicos Vaticano “The other panels were already in place but were completely deteriorated, and so they had to be substituted. So it was the certainly the right moment to think of something new, such as these panels that use passive energy, that actively capture energy.” The Vatican said it has avoided the emission of some 305 tons of carbon dioxide emissions, thanks to its solar installations. CO2 is one of the primary greenhouse gases that causes global warming. ; The book discussed future clean energy projects and solar energy initiatives, like the possibility of an electric energy-fueled popemobile. The car could be powered with electricity even from its own solar panels. It?s a project that the President of the Commission that governs the Vatican City State, Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, said he would use himself, if they pope didn?t need it. The Vatican also hopes that others nations will follow suit. The Pope is the leader of the smallest country in the world, but he hopes that an environmentally safe Vatican City will be a model for the rest of the world. BR/SC AM/FF -PP -WP ;