Geothermal energy

In 2016, geothermal energy contributed to around 3% of total primary production of renewable energy in the EU-28 countries.

Geothermal energy is present in the earth in the form of heat, and stored in rocks, trapped vapour, water or brines. This heat energy can be used directly for heating or to generate electricity.

A major advantage of geothermal energy lies in the reliability of its supply as well as its nearly unlimited availability. However, the technological system (pipe system) can require large amounts of space, and there are difficulties in maintaining the equipment which is mainly based deep under the earth’s surface. Additionally, there can be adverse environmental impacts through the release of potentially harmful or hazardous substances as a side product of this kind of energy production.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA) geothermal energy could account for around 3.5% of annual global electricity production and 3.9% of energy for heat (excluding ground source heat pumps) by 2050.


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Data sources

Data on primary production and gross inland consumption for the EU countries, as well as data on electricity generated from renewable sources, can be found in Eurostat's database on energy statistics.

Detailed information on a wide variety of data sources can be obtained via the Statistics explained page on "Renewable energy statistics" and the Directorate-General for Energy's page on renewable energy.

International energy statistics about renewable energy resources are provided by the OECD and the IEA.