The UK and Iceland signed an agreement yesterday that could see geothermal power from Iceland’s volcanoes supply electricity to the UK.
The memorandum of understanding was signed by Energy Minister Charles Hendry during a visit to Iceland’s Hellisheidi geothermal field on an active volcanic ridge in the south west of the country and his Icelandic counterpart Oddný G. Harðardóttir.
Under the terms of the agreement, the two nations will explore the options for developing an electricity connection and share information on the development of deep geothermal sector in the UK, which could supply heat to district heating networks.
The UK employs very little geothermal energy, while in Iceland it provides some 87% of the country’s space and water heating.
Geothermal has the advantage of providing a constant energy source, unlike other intermittent renewable sources like wind and solar.
But the sector is at such an early stage in the UK, it could prove costly to develop.
“[The] agreement will help pave the way for a closer relationship with Iceland, which I hope can yield significant benefits for the UK, including the development of geothermal power, greater use of interconnectors to transport energy under the sea, and developing oil and gas resources,” commented Hendry.
The UK and Iceland will also explore renewable energy projects in developing countries, particularly East Africa, through their respective international development departments.
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Article source: http://www.energyefficiencynews.com/i/5150/