Tuesday, August 15, 2017

United Kingdom: Call for Use of Geothermal Energy from Abandoned Coal Mines in Scotland

Ilona Amos: Do ‘dirty’ old coal mines hold the key to clean geothermal energy? (The Scotsman)

(Courtesy The Scotsman)
Some of Scotland’s most densely populated communities are sitting on what could, quite literally, be a hotbed of limitless clean energy.

Though our coal industry is pretty much dead and buried, the landscape today still bears the legacy of a long history of mining across the central belt. And it’s this network of disused shafts that experts believe could hold the key to what is a potentially massive – and so far virtually untapped – resource of green power derived from geothermal energy.

Geothermal has advantages over other renewable energy sources, which are often criticised for their intermittent nature. It is able to provide baseline power since it doesn’t rely on the sun shining, the wind blowing or the tide going in and out.

Two small-scale experiments using ground source heat pumps to tap warm water collected in defunct mines in Glasgow’s Shettleston and Lumphinnans in Fife have already proved successful, but those who know about these things say it’s time to think bigger, much bigger.

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