Geothermal energy is a natural form of renewable energy generated from the heat in the earth’s core, which has an estimated temperature of in excess of 6,000 degrees Celsius.
Geothermal energy has been harnessed for centuries, with the world's oldest geothermal district heating system in France, developed in the 14th century. The first modern geothermal district heating plant was developed in 1892 and the first deep geothermal electricity generation plant was developed in Italy in 1904.
Unlike solar and wind energy, geothermal energy is not dependent on the weather. Available 24/7, it is a reliable provider of electricity and heat.
Its benefits include:
- Providing countries with a supply of sustainable energy they don’t have to import
- Not being subject to fuel price volatility
- Its minimal visual impact, making it ideally suited to urban locations
What geothermal energy can be used for
Geothermal energy can be used for both heat and electricity. It can provide heat to district heating schemes, universities and hospitals. It can be used in industrial processes, such as cooling, or in aquaculture and horticulture.
Did you know?
Almost 11GW of geothermal power is generated in 24 countries today. In addition, 28GW of direct geothermal heating capacity is installed and used for district heating, industrial processes and agriculture – the equivalent heat supply for about 26 million homes.