Hessian energy provider Überlandwerk Groß-Gerau GmbH (ÜWG) has been working for several years to accelerate the transition to renewable energies in the Rhine/Main region. Major elements of this transition include increased energy efficiency and an enormous expansion in the use of renewable energies. As a municipal energy provider, the company aims to build up an energy supply based on the principle of sustainability. To do so, ÜWG is committed to making use of the sources of renewable energy available in the region – namely solar, biomass and geothermal.
Geothermal energy occupies a special position in this respect. In contrast to the other renewable energy sources mentioned, it is available all year round, regardless of the weather or the time of day. This high level of availability makes it a form of energy that is capable of handling base loads, which is something that is urgently needed as the foundation of an independent regional energy supply.
Consequently, ÜWG in 2007 launched an ambitious project — the first of its kind in Hesse — to construct an innovative deep geothermal power station, backed by political support. The plans for this project envisage investments of roughly €35–40 million. Hesse’s first deep geothermal power station for providing electricity and heat could be operational in 2014/2015.
A geothermal power station could generate approximately 25 million kilowatt-hours of green electricity per year. This amount would be sufficient to supply power to around 7,000 households in the Groß-Gerau district, which would make a significant contribution to the district’s political goal of covering roughly 30% of its energy consumption with renewable energies by the year 2020. The heat generated as a by-product by a power station of this nature could meet the annual heating requirements of around 400 private households, which is the approximate equivalent of 750,000 liters of home heating oil. This could save a total of as much as 27,000 metric tons of CO2.
Überlandwerk Groß-Gerau GmbH
64521 Groß-Gerau, Germany