Increased interest from local authorities for the exploitation of geothermal waters

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During the last year, the National Agency for Mineral Resources (ANRM) has intensified the procedures for granting the administration of geothermal water sources to the territorial administrative units (UAT). In an interview for Energynomics, the president of ANRM Nicolae Turdean specified that for the western and central area of the country were granted over 70 licenses for administration in the last year. “All UATs are very interested in taking over the respective sources, in order to make investments in sanatoriums or health recovery centers”, Turdean specified. Where geothermal waters have higher temperatures, there are also projects for district heating, as is the case in Valea Oltului or Călimănești.

Some UATs have started the procedures to attract European funds and many mayors are increasingly interested in this type of resource.

At the request of the mayors, ANRM put in the public tender procedure an increasing number of perimeters with geothermal water resources. “On the last list, for example, more than 30% are geothermal waters, and most of them were requested precisely by the UATs,” said Nicolae Turdean.

Investments in district heating projects based on geothermal sources are supported by a state aid scheme recently approved by the European Commission. Romania has notified the Commission of its intention to provide public support of up to 750 million lei (approximately 150 million euros) for the construction and / or modernization of several thermal energy production facilities and distribution networks (with a contribution of up to 20% of the total value of investments in the case of the latter). The aid would be granted in the form of direct grants financed from the EU structural funds managed by Romania.

The aid measure aims to support investments in thermal energy production plants with up to 60 MW of thermal equivalent, to allow the transition from the use of fossil fuels (coal, natural gas) for the production of thermal energy to the exclusive use of renewable sources. energy (such as biogas, biomass and geothermal thermal energy)

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