Iceland to help establish Geothermal Training Programme in China

Beijing skyline, from Jingshan Park (source: flickr/ Caitriana Nicholson, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 26 May 2019

China establishes Geothermal School based on the Geothermal Training Program of the United Nations University in Iceland, in collaboration with Iceland and its National Energy Authority.

In the next coming months, a geothermal training program based on the Icelandic example of the United Nations University Geothermal Training Programme in Iceland will be commencing in China, as reported from Iceland.

Earlier this month, at the Arctic Circle conference in Shanghai, a cooperation agreement was signed between the National Energy Agency, China’s Geothermal Center and the Icelandic company Arctic Green Energy on the operation of a similar program in China.

Gudni A. Jóhannesson Managing Director of the National Energy Authority says that the programme will start operations in the next ten months. It will first be located in Beijing, but in the future in the green city of Xiongan, which is now being built near the capital.

“What is remarkable here in China is that our experience of direct geothermal utilization for heating is coming directly to utilization here in China. And, in fact, results in huge changes in energy consumption and then emissions and pollution, ”says Mr. Johannesson.

Lilja Alfredsdóttir, Iceland’s Minister of Education and Science, attended the Arctic Circle in Shanghai. She says multinational co-operation has great significance for Iceland.

“That’s why we’re here. Because we want to increase scientific co-operation on a state. States’ scientific co-operation is on the increase these days because of climate change, and the only way to manage these climate change is precisely through scientific research and innovation, “says Lilja.

The United Nations Geothermal School in Iceland takes in 25 to 35 students with a university degree or comparable education per year in practical study of the utilization of geothermal energy. The energy director says the Chinese, on the other hand, want to take up to 150 students a year at the new programme there. About or over hundreds of Icelandic experts and scientists will come to the school under the guidance of the National Energy Authority.

“So here, of course, there will be great tasks for Icelandic experts, Icelandic teachers and mentors. Since then, this collaboration can lead to companies coming to geothermal development in China, ”says Gudni A. Jóhannesson.