Energy Plus – a new push for geothermal heating in Poland
Poland pushes geothermal energy as part of a priority plan for cleaner heating sources of the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management.
Energy Plus “with a budget of PLN 4 billion (EUR928m) and” district heating “with a budget of PLN 500 million (EUR 116m) are two new priority programs of the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Poland. The goal of the program is to eliminate smog. “Energy Plus” predicts the use of geothermal waters in thermal energy – writes Teresa Wójcik, editor of BiznesAlert.pl.
NFO?iGW Vice-President Artur Michalski announced on February 18 to the media that the “Energy Plus” program is a comprehensive instrument to support the fight for clean air. It corresponds to precisely identified market needs of Polish industry, resulting from legal regulations, more stringent low emission and CO2 emission standards, and the principles of sustainable development.
A certain novelty in the program is the assumption of energy use of geothermal resources. Vice-President Michalski, answering the questions of the BiznesAlert.pl journalist, informed that NFO?iGW plans for the development of geothermal energy as an important and stable emission-free source of thermal energy.
In Mazovia, geothermal resources are successfully used, among others in Mszczonów. Where the thermal water is of such high purity that it is directed to the municipal water supply system as drinking water after the heat is transferred.
The geothermal heating plant in Mszczonów replaced three obsolete municipal coal-fired boilers, which emitted 15 tons of nitrogen compounds, 60 tons of sulfur compounds, 9700 tons of carbon dioxide and 145 tons of dust every year. After using geothermal power and an additional gas heating system co-operating with it – dust emissions dropped to zero, the emission of sulfur compounds disappeared, nitrogen compounds dropped to one tonne per year, and CO2 emissions are four times lower – this is a gas heating system). Because Mszczonów geothermal waters with a temperature of 42 degrees C, obtained from a depth of 1700 m, effectively heat Mszczonów until the air temperature does not fall below minus 5 degrees Celsius.
Vice-President Michalski also mentioned Masovian Sochaczew as one of the Polish cities that were included in the international project “Geothermal energy: the basis of low-emission heating, improving living conditions and sustainable development – preliminary studies for selected areas in Poland”.
The project is implemented from the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area (EEA) 2009-2014 by teams of leading Polish specialists in the field of geothermal energy – from the Institute for Mineral Resources and Energy, Polish Academy of Sciences (leader), AGH University of Science and Technology S. Staszica in Cracow, Wroc?aw University of Technology. The research teams from and abroad from the National Energy Agency in Iceland and from Christian Michelsen Research AS in Norway and from the European Geothermal Energy Council also participate in the project implementation. Research and research drilling are implemented, among others in L?dek Zdrój, Konstantynów ?ódzki, and Podd?bice.
Sochaczew was qualified to obtain funds for geothermal drilling. However, the borehole is only the beginning of the route to use geothermal energy. The next stage will be the preparation of the concept of using hot springs. And this is to help Polish cities to participate in the program, financed from EEA funds.
In Poland, geothermal heating (despite the appropriate potential in many regions) is still at the initial stage of development. The exceptions include Geotermia Podhala?ska, Mszczonów, Toru? and Pyrzyce and Stargard Szczeci?ski, where hot waters from the interior of the earth provide heat for the residents.
Cooperation with Scandinavia
Project “Geothermal energy: the basis of low-emission heating, improving living conditions and sustainable development – preliminary studies for selected areas in Poland”. opens the way for the long-awaited cooperation between Poland, Iceland and Norway in the field of geothermal energy within the framework of EEA and Norwegian Funds. It is a chance to achieve significant progress of geothermal heating in Poland.