Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Germany: Phase 2 of Growth for the International Geothermal Association

The IGA Secretariat remains in Bochum, Germany for another three years (News Release)

German Environment Minister Johannes Remmel visited today with a
delegation of EnergieAgentur.NRW the Geothermal Centre Bochum
on the campus of the University of Bochum.
(Courtesy EnergyAgency.NRW)
The Minister of the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia’s (NRW) Ministry for Climate Protection, Environment, Agriculture, Conservation and Consumer Protection (MKULNV) visited the International Geothermal Association at its headquarters today.

Minister Remmel officially kick-started Phase 2 of the International Geothermal Association (IGA) at its host institution, the International Geothermal Centre of Bochum (GZB) at the University of Applied Sciences of Bochum. The GZB is an institute for research, education, communication and networking with a regional to global focus. Many institutions for these different tasks are based at the GZB.

Minister Remmel commented: 'Geothermal energy is a baseload energy and can play a key role in the energy transition of densely populated metropolitan areas. The federal state has a significant heating demand, which can also be met by using geothermal energy. Our study on geothermal potentials shows that more than 50% of the heat demand in NRW could be covered by low enthalpy geothermal applications like borehole heat exchangers. The GZB is a competent partner in exploring and making use of these resources'.

During his visit Minister Remmel officially handed over the note of project funding for the extension of the IGA's headquarters in Germany. The project extension cost of around 1 million Euro is partly funded by the federal state and partly by the EU. Since 2011, the University of Applied Sciences of Bochum has been the home of the IGA. It is expected that the IGA will enhance the scientific and technology transfer between NRW companies/ institutions and international entities and thereby open up new markets.

Dr. Juliet Newson, the President of the IGA appreciates the support by the federal state: ‘On behalf of the International Geothermal Association (IGA), I want to thank the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia, and the EU for the continuing support of the IGA Secretariat in Bochum. The IGA is pleased to be associated with the strong renewable energy focus of North Rhine-Westphalia. We appreciate the opportunity to encourage use of geothermal as a clean energy option for Europe and for the world.’

Prof. Dr. Rolf Bracke, the Director of the GZB appreciates the IGA’s international outreach for the federal state and comments: 'The new knowledge and transfer platform for geothermal climate protection technologies provides a win-win situation for the IGA and the GZB. The research institute GZB provides the IGA and the nearby industry with an excellent framework setting and is at the same time strengthened through the international networks and contacts of the IGA.

Prof. Dr. Martin Sternberg, President of the University of Applied Sciences in Bochum comments: 'The International Geothermal Association significantly assisted the GZB as well as German companies and research entities in its international projects and in becoming more prominent globally. We appreciate the recognition by the federal state, the EU and the IGA Board of Directors that the IGA continues to steer its operations from Bochum.'

The Managing Director of the EnergyAgency.NRW Dr. Frank-Michael Baumann confirms: 'Bochum as headquarters of the IGA succeeded in establishing an excellent reputation in the geothermal sector internationally over the last 5 years. With the continuation of the IGA in NRW, companies and scientific entities can more easily become partners in international projects and thereby increase its international operations.’