Collaborative energy research at the European level is essential to support Europe's
transition to a more sustainable energy policy, the fight against global climate
change and air pollution, ensure security and diversity of Europe's energy supply,
and improve industrial competitiveness.
Commission support for geothermal energy research has been part of all six framework
programmes. EU co-ordinated research in the field of Enhanced Geothermal Systems
(EGS) started in FP3.
EGS technology could permit significant levels of electricity generation in many
countries that are not currently considered as geothermal, though continued
technological research is required before pilot plants can provide convincing
demonstration of the practical and economic aspects of EGS systems. EGS technology
has been developed to a large extent in the EU co-funded EGS Project at
Soultz-sous-Forêts, and Europe is presently the world leader in this technology. The
verification of the technical feasibility and cost-effectiveness of electricity
production from EGS is one of the strategically important research areas in the
medium to longer term part of the Sustainable Energy Work Programme of the current
(6th) Framework Programme. In addition, international co-operation takes place
through the Commission participation in the IEA Geothermal Implementing Agreement.
The Commission is committed to supporting research into geothermal technologies in
the 7th Framework Programme.