Geothermal Energy Summit 2022
This event will bring together geoscientists, social scientists, policy makers, industry partners and more to discuss the potential for geothermal energy use in Ireland. It will aim to identify and address the barriers to greater uptake of geothermal energy in Ireland and how we can collaborate to develop this important sector that can help decarbonise our energy needs. Presentations and discussions will include topics such as geothermal energy for heating/cooling networks, identifying and estimating our potential resources, and how to build a stronger geothermal sector in Ireland.
More information on geothermal in Ireland or our briefing note published in 2021.
|Photo: David FitzPatrick, President TUDublin, Minister
Smyth, Marie Cowan, Director, Geological Survey of Northern Ireland, Koen
Verbruggen, Director, Geological Survey Ireland.
Press Release, 2 pm, Wednesday, 9 November 2022
Heat from beneath our feet: Geothermal energy as a way to
decarbonise the Irish heat sector and increase energy security
The first National Geothermal Energy Summit is being held today at Technological University Dublin, Grangegorman.
Geological Survey Ireland, a division of the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC), has partnered with TU Dublin to explore the geothermal resource beneath Dublin city centre. In 2021, a temperature of 38° Celsius was measured in an exploratory borehole at a depth of 1 km beneath the surface. Given that there should be a constant increase in temperature with increase in depth, this result indicates that the energy required for district heating may be located by drilling to depths of between 2 and 3 km.
TU Dublin has ambitions to be the first deep geothermal district-heating demonstration project in Ireland, and is expected to provide valuable lessons for the development of an indigenous geothermal industry in the future.
Speaking at the National Geothermal Energy Summit, Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications, Ossian Smyth TD, said, “The drivers behind this surge of interest in geothermal energy are the climate emergency and the need to decarbonise our energy systems —particularly our heat sector — and the critical issue of energy security brought into sharp focus by the war on Ukraine. Geothermal energy can help in both of these regards as it is a low carbon, economical, and local energy source. As a renewable resource, it is also aligned with the Circular Economy. This event is a great chance for people from different sectors with an interest in accelerating geothermal energy development in Ireland to come together and plan our next steps.”
Geothermal energy is energy stored in the form of heat in the Earth. A range of geothermal technologies are available that can harness this heat from depths of just a few metres to several kilometres. Geothermal energy can be used for heating and cooling, and is an ideal complement to district heating or heat network technology. Many European cities are using and developing geothermal systems, including some with very similar geological conditions to Ireland. Paris, Munich, and Milan are partially heated by geothermal energy, and many EU members have announced ambitious geothermal targets for the next decade and beyond. It is estimated that geothermal district heating networks could provide heat for 25% of the European population.
Geothermal energy is available almost everywhere and 94% of Ireland is suitable for shallow geothermal applications. Our deeper resources are less well understood, but initiatives such as the TU Dublin geothermal project are an important step in quantifying the full potential of these resources. Geothermal heating has proven to be sustainable, secure and cost-effective in many locations across the EU, and geothermal energy can now play a significant role in Ireland’s energy transition to a carbon neutral and circular economy.
NOTES TO THE EDITOR
Geological Survey Ireland
Geological Survey Ireland is the national Earth science centre. It is responsible for providing geological advice and information, and for the acquisition of data for this purpose. Geological Survey Ireland produces a range of products, including maps, reports and databases, and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology. For further information see: ‘An Assessment of Geothermal Energy for District Heating in Ireland’
Geothermal energy is defined as energy in the form of heat stored beneath the surface of the Earth. This heat can be found both near the surface (trapped heat from the Sun) and deep underground (heat from the core of the Earth), and can be used in a wide variety of applications, including space heating (and cooling), industry, agriculture and even electricity generation.
Geoscience Policy Division
The Geoscience Policy Division in DECC is currently working to finalise a policy statement for geothermal energy, which will be followed by new legislation for the sector in 2023. The policy statement will outline the preferred approach to be taken in developing a regulatory framework, highlight the need for meaningful engagement with the public, and scope out a strategy to promote the sustainable development of Ireland’s geothermal resources for the benefit of all. Please also see the 2020 document: ‘Geothermal Energy in Ireland: A roadmap for a policy and regulatory framework’
TU Dublin has campuses in Dublin City Centre, in Blanchardstown and in Tallaght, and, through major infrastructural development plan, is currently investing over €500 million in new, state-of-the-art, technology-enabled facilities to enhance students' experience.
A leader in STEM disciplines, TU Dublin also supports the largest cohorts of students of business, media, culinary arts, and the creative and performing arts. TU Dublin is passionate about life-long learning, and as the largest provider of part-time education, makes an important contribution to the economic life of Ireland, enabling capacity building for the future. See https://www.tudublin.ie/
for more information.