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TWI at geothermal event during EU Sustainable Energy Week

Wed, 01 May, 2019

TWI is taking the lead on an event concerning the promotion of geothermal energy for EU Sustainable Energy Week - #EUSEW19 - in Brussels, Belgium.

The event, which is being organised in collaboration with the Geological Survey of Austria and the European Geothermal Energy Council (EGEC), will take place on Wednesday, 19 June and is titled, ‘Geothermal energy: Meeting financial and technical challenges.’

Workshop – the concept:

As the Renewable Energy Directive calls for an overall policy to increase the production and promotion of renewable energy sources in the EU, with a target of at least 32% of energy production to come from renewable sources by 2030, geothermal technologies can provide a solution to this challenge.

Geothermal technologies are suited to provide heating/cooling in district heating for both industry and individual buildings, while also allowing for the supply of dispatchable, baseload and flexible renewable electricity. In fact, the World Energy Assessment (2000) found that geothermal energy has a higher potential for technically harnessable renewables than solar or wind energy. Furthermore, different technologies for deep or shallow geothermal projects offer the potential to generate, drain or even store low temperature heat for both domestic and commercial use.

However, the deployment of this renewable resource remains a challenge due to a lack of awareness and the investment costs associated with drilling and the operation of geothermal power plants – especially given the aggressive nature of natural geothermal environments. This challenge is heightened with large projects, where the uncertainty of the quality of the resource creates questions over the output of a plant.

The answer to these challenges comes through technical innovation, with risk mitigation schemes already reducing the cost and thereby the associated concerns over geothermal.

Any such large-scale shift in energy production requires techno-scientific advancements as well as cultural, social, and political choices, which may facilitate public debate.

To assuage concerns, an interdisciplinary 360 degree approach is required, and this workshop is designed to help raise awareness about the maturation of geothermal energy as well as its value to advance a clean and sustainable energy future.

The event will not only highlight the environmental, financial and technical advancements and challenges associated with geothermal energy, but will also present solutions from a number of related European funded projects.

You can find out more about the EUSEW geothermal energy event here and see the agenda and register here.