On the 11th December 2020 took place the third and final day of the Shallow Geothermal Days 2020. On opportunity the focus shifted from the perks of shallow geothermal and the European potential to the incorporation of geothermal energy in the future of European Carbon neutrality.
It is no secret that the European Union is massively investing in renewable energy sources and energy storage to decarbonize its economy. The session once again proved the necessity of geothermal energy in the upcoming carbon neutral market. Not only geothermal has a huge green and economically viable potential but it also shows potential in disruptive technologies such as combined renewables sources and thermal storage. Combined renewables sources consist of two or more renewable energy sources used together to provide increased system efficiency as well as greater balance in energy supply. For example, geothermal could provide baseload energy whilst alternating energy sources could provide additional power at pick demand time.
It is now important for the European Commission and its institutions to act on climate and to act quickly. To that end, the Innovation Fund has been launched to fund a number of projects to help with changing the energy panaroma. A total of 58 out of 322 proposals submitted (18%) on the 2nd December for Large-Scale projects under the Innovation Fund were geothermal energy-related (mostly heating and cooling and thermal storage). Whilst this high number of geothermal projects does not reflect the final outcome of the bid, it however shows a growing interest in the technology on the European scene.
Will Europe be able to meet its energy-related challenges for the upcoming years?