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Develop Geothermal Electricity in Europe to have a renewable energy mix (GEOELEC)

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The objective of GEOELEC project is to convince decision-makers about the potential of geothermal electricity in Europe, to stimulate banks and investors in financing geothermal power installations and finally to attract key potential investors such as oil and gas companies and electrical utilities to invest in the geothermal power. The action plan that will be developed towards removing the non-technical barriers will result in geothermal electricity to draw the attention of policy makers and the industry, giving geothermal power the high profile it has in other parts of the world, and in persuading capital venture and other companies to seek the benefit from investing in the technology. This project aims also at effectively exhibiting the potential contribution of geothermal electricity in all EU-27 countries, for a short and mid-term perspective. A strategy to reach these objectives will be elaborated in describing the technical, financial, legal, social and environmental issues and in presenting concrete solutions. Notably special attention will be dedicated to training new professionals in the sector and on the future jobs creation.

Results

  • GEOELEC will result in an action plan towards more geothermal electricity generation in Europe, with the objective to double installed geothermal power capacity in Europe from 11 TWh per year in 2010 generated mainly in Italy and Iceland, to 22 TWh per year in the short/medium term and initiate new projects in every EU member state leading to 55 TWh per year by 2020
  • GEOELEC will also result in setting concrete actions to reach these objectives: conditions for financial feasibility, a regulatory framework, and public acceptance. GEOELEC will first use available geological and technological information to present the potential contribution of the geothermal power sector in the EU. These projections will take into account the electricity grid and the present/future electricity demand. Based on this prospective analysis, an action plan for technical, legal, environmental, financial and socio-educative aspects will be developed.
  • The identified initiatives will be presented in a series of 7 promotional workshops and a final conference, where key decision makers will participate actively. The conclusions will be presented and explained in a final GEOELEC report. Then, political support will be gained through a series of meetings in the 7 partner countries. For this purpose an advisory committee will be created. This committee will be formed by the main stakeholders of geothermal energy in Europe.
  • The GEOELEC objective is to spur geothermal development all over Europe, by developing additional hydrothermal and new EGS resources, also using technology developed by European programmes, already successfully proven in Soultz, Simbach and Unterhaching geothermal power plants.
  • The final result will be to have more European countries developing geothermal electricity, an increased installed capacity with grid stability and a larger contribution of the geothermal sector to the European energy mix.
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Lessons learned

  • There are no technical limitations to the deployment of geothermal electricity in Europe. This project receive many interest during the 7 workshops.
  • Long discussions took place to define the methodology for the resource assessment ‘geothermal resource protocol. In the end, a solid methodology has been adopted in order to be used for reaching our final objectives: create a web-GIS on geothermal potential in Europe for geothermal electricity.
  • Confidentiality of information proved to be an obstacle for obtaining more relevant geological data for our geothermal resource assessment.
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Partners and coordinator

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Contact

EUROPEAN GEOTHERMAL ENERGY COUNCI
Belgium
Contact point: 
Name: 
Mr Philippe Dumas
Tel: 
0032 2 400 10 24

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In brief

Duration:
01/06/2011 to 30/11/2013
Contract number: 
IEE/10/321

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