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Old coal mine to become green heat research hub

Wednesday August 29th, 2018

Old coal mines in Scotland are set to become a leading research hub for renewable heat technologies, after plans were approved today by Glasgow City Council and South Lanarkshire Council (August 29th).Government Opportunities

Work on the £9m Glasgow Geothermal Energy Research Field Site, based in East Glasgow where some of Scotland’s busiest coal mines were once located, is now set to begin this autumn. The site aims to become a world class research centre on the potential for using old coal mines to generate harnessable low carbon heat.

Scientists plan to drill narrow boreholes into the ground to measure the temperature, water flow and seismic activity in the disused mine tunnels underground the city, in order to establish whether the warm water could be harnessed to heat Glaswegian homes.

The site is one of two proposed sites proposed under the UK Geoenergy Observatories programme led by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), the UK’s leading funder for environmental sciences, and the British Geological Survey (BGS), the UK’s principal provider of impartial geological evidence since 1835.

Tracy Shimmield, the co-director of BGS Scotland’s Lyell Centre, said the research hub will further understanding of how Scotland can use its old industrial sites to accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy.

“The Glasgow Geothermal Energy Research Field Site will enable us to better understand this environment, its characteristics, and the potential for warm water within our disused coal mines to be used practically as a source of renewable heat,” she said.

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