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Exploration started for Bukotermal/ Kutnjak geothermal project in Croatia

Exploration started for Bukotermal/ Kutnjak geothermal project in Croatia Krutnjak well, Croatia (source: Municipality of Legrad)
Alexander Richter 1 Aug 2022

Bukotermal started exploration work on an existing well for the Kutnjak geothermal project in Croatia.

Geothermal developer Bukotermal has started investigative work on the Kutnjak-1 geothermal well, in which the County of Varazdin and the Municipality of Mali Bukovec are jointly investing HRK 19 million (EUR 2.5 million).

Oil-mining works measuring static pressure and temperature at the Kutnjak-1 borehole are performed by experts from the Zagreb company Crosco, and the client is the company Bukotermal, owned by Varazdin County and the Municipality of Mali Bukovec, founded with the aim of exploiting the potential of geothermal energy in the east of Varazdin County.

The company is currently in the phase of exploration works, which include investigations of geothermal potential and works of examination and testing of existing wells, such as the aforementioned Kutnjak-1.

“We expect that in the first phase, a smaller power plant will be built and additional heat will be used for greenhouses and greenhouses in the municipalities of Mali and Veliki Bukovec. We hope that these measurements will pass within the expected range, so that we get the performance with which we plan to use the surplus heat for energy purposes,” said President of the Assembly of Varazdin County, Josip Krizanic, adding that the County will recapitalize Bukotermal with HRK 12.5 million.

The mayor of the municipality of Mali Bukovec, Darko Markovic, explained that the Kutnjak-1 and Lunjkovec-1 wells will be overhauled in the fall, as well as a detailed examination of both wells during the overhaul.

“Before the overhaul, we had to test the temperature and pressure along the entire borehole, and based on that data, we will complete the main projects that are nearing completion and request a mining permit from the Ministry of Economy so that we can do the overhaul and detailed tests. The plan is to utilize the geothermal potential of the Varazdin and Koprivnica-Krizeva counties in several phases,” said Markovic.

He also explained that the first phase would include the use of the existing two wells made in the 70s with a maximum possible power of up to 2 MW, and it is about a smaller geothermal power plant on those two wells, one of which will be production and the other injection.

In the second phase, five additional wells would be drilled, three production wells and two injection wells, to which a new power plant of 10-12 MW could be connected. In the third phase, the heat from one and the other geothermal power plant would be used, which would be used by farmers, so that heat pipes would be drawn from the power plant to the greenhouses and greenhouses, which would heat the areas where they produce flowers and vegetables during the winter period.

“Around 12 MW of electricity and five times more MW of thermal energy will be enough for Varazdin County to become energy independent. There are many power plants and energy facilities powered by renewable energy sources. This is exactly what the Varazdin County wants to become, and of course the municipalities of Mali Bukovec and Legrad will benefit from it,” said Markovic.

He added that the main examination should be completed by the end of the year, and the results will be submitted to the ministry at the beginning of next year, after which they should receive a contract on the exploitation of this geothermal field within a month or two.

“The assumption is that in the middle of next year, we could receive that document on the basis of which we could then start designing the GTE. The design phase lasts approximately six months to a year, after which construction can begin. The construction of a smaller geothermal power plant in phase 1 is not construction-intensive, so if everything turns out well, the power plant could start operating at the end of 2025,” explained Markovic.

Kristina Turk, municipal councilor of Legrad Municipality, pointed out that this project builds on the good cooperation of the neighboring municipalities, Legrad and Mali Bukovac.

“We expect great benefits for our municipality and our settlements. The municipality of Legrad is available for all projects through the announcement of public tenders and to continue to foster good cooperation between the two counties, Koprivnica-Krizevacka and Varazdinska. We are the link between two counties”, said Kristina Turk.

Geothermal energy is completely green and renewable, and it is recognized as such by the European Union, and it will soon be possible to co-finance most geothermal projects with the funds of the European Union.

The National Recovery and Resilience Plan has also recognized these projects and many research and development funds will be available through this channel as well.

Source: Klikaj