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Croatia’s Hydrocarbon Agency estimates up to 500 MW geothermal potential

Velika Ciglena geothermal power plant, Croatia (source: Turboden)
Alexander Richter 5 Feb 2020

Croatia's Hydrocarbon Agency, a government agency overseeing hydrocarbon and geothermal development in the country, estimates a geothermal development potential of around 500 MW in power generation capacity.

The licensing process (hydrocarbon or geothermal) in Croatia is carried out by the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency established by the Government of the Republic of Croatia. In 2018, new legal framework was adopted – Croatia’s energy resources have been consolidated in one place, which is the basis for creating a positive investment climate in a country that rationally manages its resources. In this regard, special emphasis was placed on the great potential of geothermal and the exploitation of geothermal water for energy purposes. Furthermore, Croatia is introducing a new Energy Strategy which will include plans of development of energy sector until 2030 with the vision of 2050. The Strategy represents a broad spectrum of energy policy initiatives that will strengthen energy security, gradually reduce energy losses and increase energy efficiency.

Since 2018, since the geothermal potential is under the authority of the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency, five tenders have been conducted to allocate exploration blocks for the exploration and exploitation of geothermal waters for energy purposes. We are pleased with the interest of renowned global companies for investments in Croatia, as well as the fact that many our local communities have recognized the wide possibilities of geothermal utilization and already started implementing projects within geothermal energy frame.

The agency has now released an overview document that highlights Croatia’s geothermal potential.

There are few countries in the Europe that have this significant potential, and even fewer that have been able to make full use of geothermal energy. Croatia has an above-average geothermal gradient – even 60% higher than the European average and has the basic prerequisite for the use of geothermal water for energy purposes. Temperature rises around 4.9 degrees Celsius with every 100m of depth at average. According to current estimates of existing geothermal sources, the current potential is 500 MW from geothermal energy. Some of these are sources of very high temperatures, usually above 120 or 150 degrees Celsius, which can be used for the production of electricity in geothermal energy, and sources with lower temperatures of 60 or 80 degrees Celsius and higher, are suitable as hot water sources suitable for exploitation in district heating systems or in agriculture. Geothermal potential in Croatia has been proven in ca existing 40 wells.

We are glad to welcome the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency to introduce the potential for geothermal development in Croatia at the IGC Invest Geothermal Finance & Investment conference in Frankfurt/ Germany – 26 March 2020.

Source: Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency Brochure (pdf)