Don’t politicians know what geothermal energy is?

Don’t politicians know what geothermal energy is?

Everyone talks about nuclear energy, but no one talks about geothermal energy. Or rock heat, the energy source beneath us in the form of stored solar heat. It will likely be 2023 The hottest in history According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the US Weather Service. Therefore, it is incomprehensible that politicians in Parliament are not making arrangements for us to get more heat from Earth.

Everyone wants more solar energy, but will they do it when we get ground-mounted solar parks covering several square kilometers of Norwegian nature?

Solar cells on rooftops and commercial buildings are great but they are not enough. Floating offshore wind requires tens of billions in subsidies, and no one wants onshore wind.

The hidden source of energy

Therefore, it is ironic that no one talks about the hidden energy source that does not harm anyone. Self Energy Committee Dropped an assessment of geothermal heat – although the report’s conclusion is “More of everything – faster»:

There are many technologies that can produce electricity either renewable or with zero emissions. Wave energy, geothermal energy and high-altitude wind are also technologies that are often mentioned as promising.“.

To describe geothermal energy as promising is an insult to professional communities, whether they are consulting engineers or good drillers.

Can be used for generations

While sales of air-to-air heat pumps are at a record high due to rising electricity prices, there has been an uptick in the number of homeowners installing geothermal heating. An investment of plus or minus NOK 300,000 loses out to a NOK 25,000 heat pump, even if electricity costs are reduced by more than half. While a heat pump lasts a maximum of 20 years, an energy well lasts for several generations.

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The temperature in the well is usually 6-8 degrees. A heat pump that draws energy from the ground and raises the temperature to the desired level only needs 1 kWh of electricity to provide 3.5-4 kWh for heating and hot water. Electricity costs can be cut in half or even reduced by 70 percent.

One a report From Asplan Viak commissioned by NVE in 2011 it was concluded that 33 TWh could be produced if geoenergy was used instead of electricity for heating. A new report will almost certainly conclude that the potential is greater.

I recently visited ON Power in Iceland, the largest geothermal power plant in Europe. 75% of the country’s energy use comes from the ground. We have different basic conditions than Iceland, fortunately we can say after the recent volcanic eruption, so we also do not have the natural conditions for producing electricity from deep wells. for now. But research is being conducted both in Norway and a number of other countries into how deep one must go to achieve electricity production.

Great international interest

Thanks to the experience gained from drilling on the Norwegian continental shelf, we at least have a good and larger environment for drilling expertise in Norway than in Iceland.

At the international level, there is tremendous interest in geoenergy. Over the past 10 years, Icelandic company Arctic Green has designed and built geothermal district heating systems in more than 70 cities in Europe and Asia, mostly in China. Sweden has more than 600,000 plants that extract 17 terawatt-hours from the ground annually, where homeowners also get tax breaks.

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In Norway, several geothermal projects are being developed along the lines of the Fjell skole model in Drammen, where a thermal battery has been built to store seasonal heat. Solar cells power a pump that provides heat to 100 wells in the summer. In winter, energy is recovered to provide heat for 10,000 square metres2 Building stock.

In this way, energy wells can be combined with both wind and sun to become a reservoir to benefit from cooling in the summer and heat in the winter.

An overview from Asplan Viak shows that the company has designed several new geothermal projects, e.g Seasonal heat storage To heat the football fields in Kolbotn IL, New Energy Well Park Fjerdinge School In Rælingen and the district heating plant with energy well park of the Student Union in Trondheim. These are examples of a growing number of projects appearing in energy accounts locally.

What happens to support plans?

Increased investment in geothermal energy for homes, commercial buildings and industry will reduce electricity costs and help maintain Norway’s energy surplus. But then support plans are needed that make it tempting to incur a relatively large investment cost. At current interest rates, homeowners are reluctant to pay several hundred thousand kroner for water-borne heating.

The Energy Commission earlier this year proposed a National lift For energy efficiency in buildings where the goal should be to save at least 20 TWh by 2030. They wanted a concrete action plan for how to do this and stressed that it was urgent. Therefore, expectations for the state budget for 2024 were correct, however In the budget, the government proposed only NOK 180 million for Enova as incremental investment. It’s very little. Present supports The price for installing a liquid-to-water heat pump is limited to NOK 10,000. It should be on par with solar cells because the investment cost is quite similar.

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The problem and advantage of geothermal energy is that it is invisible. The advantage is because it does not harm nature, and it is a problem because politicians do not see or understand the potential of the short-term, renewable and inexhaustible energy source.

Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

"Web specialist. Lifelong zombie maven. Coffee ninja. Hipster-friendly analyst."

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