UK oil and gas player pushing geothermal development

UK oil and gas player pushing geothermal development Cornish Valleys, Cornwall, UK (source: flickr/ Jack Pease, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 21 Jun 2021

In efforts towards transitioning with conventional resources towards sustainability, UK-based oil and gas player Angus Energy is targeting geothermal development in the UK.

British onshore oil and gas development, production and operations firm Angus Energy is also exploring geothermal. In a recent presentation the company shared details on its geothermal plans.

As part of its efforts on geothermal energy the company described repurposing onshore hydrocarbon wells for the production and storage of geothermal energy as an opportunity. With existing energy infrastructure already in place, low cost and sustainable heat can be harnessed from hydrocarbon wells.

Angus is considering using  geological, drilling and engineering skills to develop one other major geothermal energy project on another brownfield site. The technology is a close fit to our oil and gas experience and offers the possibility of safe, sustainable, base load, electricity generation. This exciting new technology is about to become mainstream and Angus sees a role in promoting this.

The company has already been in discussions with academic researchers and have engaged industry specialists in the geothermal energy field. One conceptual study has validated the possibility of a pilot geothermal initiative at our Saltfleetby site within the southern extent of the field. This raises the possibility of utilising Saltfleetby as a geothermal energy producer with the potential of generating up to 2MW of heat. This energy could then be used to power the site or support enhanced covered cash crop agriculture, as well as having the potential to provide an electricity surplus for other high impact community projects.

In a presentation this month, the company shared further details pointing to a target of 60 MW geothermal development by 2028, describing the UK potential for geothermal at up to 8,000 GWhr of baseload power. [The presentation is not as clear with regards to power vs heat production we though estimate that the company is targeting electricity generation.]

Angus Energy is initially targeting the development of three sites with ca 20 MW of capacity each. This would mean a total of 60 MW of development over six years with an estimated potential revenue stream for the company of GBP 300 million over a 20 year period.

The company sees the key for its geothermal efforts to derisk the drilling and subsurface challenges by applying multiple wells, improved drilling programme, downhole technology and well design, as well as surface capture of the energy.

Grants and preferential projects will be key to attracting capital for project development.

The company has identified 8 sites with 3 probable projects and has advanced heads of terms with one project. Angus Energy has been engaged in discussions with the Environment Agency in the UK and local authorities, as well as bodies to start joint lobbying efforts. Partnerships with universities are to support the company’ s efforts. Next steps would be an outline feasibility study on surface heat conversion and engage on funding from capital providers with partners.

Source: Company presentation