Developing thermal power plants in Poland and other countries
The company Arctic Green Energy, which is based in Iceland, is developing eight projects in Poland.
Each project involves the construction of thermal power plants where thermal heat is used for heating houses. In total, the thermal power production capacity of these projects in Poland is estimated to be around 240 megawatts of thermal power. In comparison, the Nesjavellir-electric plant has a thermal power capacity of around 250 megawatts.
Can grow large in size
Eiríkur Bragason, Director of Operations, says the company has six people in Poland working on the development of the projects. He says the need for clean energy in Poland is enormous and that these projects can grow in size later on.
“In these countries, it’s most appropriate to build many small thermal power plants, other than here at home, where there are few and larger ones. In these projects, we’ve usually used Icelandic engineering laboratories, so it’s important to us that Polish people come here, as they are today, to study the use of thermal energy in this country,” Bragason told mbl.is following a presentation about the possibilities of cooperation in the development of heating and renewable energy in Poland, held at the Reykjavik Natura Hotel on Tuesday.
Largest geothermal operation in the world
Arctic Green Energy is a geothermal company that has been building thermal and electrical plants that use geothermal energy. The company has so far mostly worked in Asia where it has over 700 thermal plants operating in companies that it owns about half. It is the largest geothermal plant in the world with about 6.5 gigawatts of thermal energy capacity.
Three years ago, the company started developing several projects in central Europe, including in Poland, where about 40 million people live and there are about 500 hot water distribution systems running, all of which are powered by hot water heated by coal and gas.
“Everyone wants to change this quickly. There are a number of reasons, for example, to reduce pollution and to reduce gas imports from other countries,” says Eiríksson. The long-term project, he says, is to keep house heating prices stable. That’s why there’s a lot of interest from many countries to use the geothermal energy.
“We’ve been offering municipalities to work together to drill for hot water and connect to these distribution networks. We’re investing in drilling, building these heating plants and running them.”
“We are exporting knowledge on a large scale”
According to Bragason, the company is working on a number of exciting projects related to electricity and heat plants, including projects in Hungary, as well as projects in Slovakia and Croatia. The projects in these countries are similar in size. He says that he is not aware of any other parties investing in such a large amount in geothermal projects abroad.
“We have an agreement with the city of Budapest to connect the plant to a new power supply system and heat it up with clean energy. Construction will start in a few months.”
According to Bragason, there scope amounts to approximately four Nesjavellir plants in all of these European countries. According to him, both in relation to Arctic Green Energy projects in Asia and in Europe, the Icelandic engineering companies were relied upon. “So we are exporting knowledge on a large scale,” Bragason concludes.