The Dolomites have always been an important heritage for the communities who live here, and our culture has always been characterized by the care in preserving our lands despite the inevitable tourist development. This Heritage has now deserved inclusion as UNESCO World Heritage and we must be proud of that.
We have grown up with this idea and we have tried to preserve the site where our father built the Rifugio by implementing ecologically-friendly, energy-saving, technological innovations, in order to allow those who visit these beautiful mountains to find the right balance between tourist innovations and pristine nature.
Our Thermomax solar panels of English make were installed in the 90s. In those years they could yield a double amount of energy compared to traditional panels. Today, though the energy produced is in line with traditional panels, the Thermomax technology is still preferable in the mountains for the light weight on the roof and permeability to strong winds. The heating system is in vacuum collectors thanks to a semiconductor gas/liquid which requires a lesser quantity of liquid inside the collectors and the system.
A further, though not less important heating source comes from refrigeration. In order to generate cold, you generate heat which goes through a heat pump and heats the water of the boiler which works with the solar panels. The oil burner helps only in case of need to reach the necessary temperature.
The large windows of the restaurant allow both an amazing view on the Dolomites outside and a greenhouse effect inside. In addition, state-of-the-art insulated glazing in the bedrooms and dormitories prevent heat loss. In a place where temperatures often drop below zero, as low as -25, all these precautions have made it possible to improve heating in the house without affecting costs, to the great satisfaction of our guests.
Our ten-year experience with photovoltaic, though small in size because of the surface of the roof, is absolutely positive.
The system allows cutting energy bills during the opening seasons and keep the Rifugio active during closing periods.
We feed the power grid with the surplus energy and when it is not used it generates a credit in our favour.
We all know that water is a basic necessity, but we never give it a thought. We turn the tap on and just expect water will be running, actually it “must”. In the mountains, this is not always true and we have always worked hard to have water on Lagazuoi. The whole area to the north of the rifugio, once a glacier, features a Karstic geology and even after heavy rainfalls, the water quickly disappears underground and resurfaces 600 m below. In 1987, with the renovation works and the extension of the rifugio, we have built a 320 m3 concrete tank which collects all the waters available at 3000 m: snowmelt waters in spring, rainwater from the roof and water pumped from Passo Falzarego during the high season. This implies continuous expenses and if you add filtration and chlorination, the cost of a shower token is fully justified and is meant to give a value to what we are using.
Since this is not running water, it is not used in food preparation unless previously boiled.
Black-waters are collected through a 2.5 km pipe into an Imhoff tank at Passo Falzarego and disposed of by specialized firms.
Therefore, make good use of the water you find at Rifugio Lagazuoi and bring this constructive experience back with you, we will need it in the future!
In civilized societies, recycling has become a daily routine activity, but recycling and at the same time reducing the volume of the materials has been our continuous challenge for many years. Limited spaces and transport costs to the valley increase the motivation to reduce the amount of “waste” as much as possible.
We started back in 1983, when we purchased a shredding machine which reduces waste to 1/6, in the following years we continued with a press machine for plastic and cardboard and last year a three-compartment baling press machine for cardboard and tins.