A municipality in Northern France is experimenting with community-funded multi-drain geothermal energy to supply its city’s heating network with renewable energy • Public concerns over deep-geothermal project by TLS Geothermics in Saint-Pierre-Roche were addressed • A new agreement with local hospital will result in an extension and acceleration of regional district heating network development in Nouvelle-Aquitaine • Read more about sustainable heating and cooling developments in France in the February news update
Vélizy-Villacoublay’s 1,600 meters deep multi-drain geothermal wells will collectively supply the city’s heating network with both heating and domestic hot water. In total, the geothermal energy will connect to 12,000 residential homes and industrial premises and reduce Co2 emissions by 22,801 tons per year. This public-private initiative, officially named as the joint subsdiary “Véligéo”, is a partnership between Vélizy-Villacoublay and the energy provider Engie Solutions.
It was launched as the first SES LTE (energy transition law) project in Ile-de-France, which allows certain types of companies to carry out renewable energy production while inviting local communities to take a share of their capital, or to contribute to the financing of the project. The project has also received financial support from ADEME and the Ile-de-France region.
The region’s deep-geothermal project is co-developed by TLS Geothermics, a Toulouse-based company, and Storengy, a subsidiary of Engie. It is set to start the first drillings as of November of this year and it has already been approved by the municipality’s council, as it was given a favorable vote in the beginning of February (9 for and 2 against).
However, as a response to this decision, two public meetings were held to respond to public concerns, e.g., its related risks, its noise and pollution levels, its impact on biodiversity, and its consequences on both tourism and real-estate prices. TLS representatives responded to the public inquires, while the audience remained rather unconvinced.
The heating network, managed by Dalkia since 2009, is fueled by renewable energies and local heat recoveries, as heating from local biomass wood- and straw-boilers. The network has already doubled in size over the last two years, from 15km to over 30km, reaching all the way to the south-east parts of the city. The CHU (The Poitiers University Hospital) took advantage of this extension to complement their previous heat production by geothermal energy, heat-pump energy recovery, and gas. It total, the hospital center is now 69% fueled by renewable energies where this extension and access to local green energies will, by estimation, reduce their CO2 emissions by 2.000 tons.
Sweden is at the forefront of decentralised heat networks technology. Our aim for “Sustainable Heating & Cooling by Sweden” is to facilitate knowledge sharing between British, French and Swedish stakeholders and develop and encourage environmental and economic best practice.
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