The Ministry has issued permits for the exploration of geothermal water in the exploration areas - "Leščan" and "Međimurje 5" - to the company INA-INDUSTRIJA NAFTE d.d.; "Pčelić" and "Sječe" - to the company IGeoPen d.o.o. (the bidder relies on a company from the United Kingdom); "Kotoriba" - to Viola Energy Generation d.o.o. (the bidder relies on a company from Turkey).
Activation of geothermal potential will set in motion an investment cycle worth around €400 million, which is an additional incentive for the Croatian economy - said Davor Filipović, Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, at the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency briefing on the occasion of issuing permits for exploration of geothermal water for energy purposes.
The Minister pointed out that the potential of geothermal sources has been talked about for decades and that this government is now activating this potential.
This is a great thing for the Republic of Croatia, because we have translated the potential of geothermal energy into concrete projects that will provide around 600,000 MWh of green, renewable electricity per year. We will generate electricity on Croatian soil. The extraction of geothermal water for heating purposes is a trend in the world that Croatia is also following. We will have enough energy to heat over 200,000 households. That is about enough energy for two Osijeks a year - Filipović said, adding that the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development will continue to fully support the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency in further developing the geothermal potential of the Republic of Croatia.
President of the Management Board of the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency Marijan Krpan stressed that "the Pannonian Basin in the Republic of Croatia has a geothermal gradient 60 per cent higher than the European average, and this puts Croatia in a favourable position when we talk about the possibilities of using geothermal energy."
He added that the opening of access to data that can be viewed online today and collected for the needs of the oil industry to develop geothermal, i.e. green projects, is a unique example, not only in Europe but also in the world, and that Croatia is highlighted in this sense, as the country is an example of promoting and supporting the development of geothermal projects and the energy transition.
We have a database of about 3,500 wells data, a database of seismic data covering an area of about 20,000 square kilometres, and a large amount of 3D seismic data. This is valuable input data for investors, which defines the exploration areas well and confirms the geothermal potential, which significantly reduces the risk and cost of initial investment in research for investors - said Krpan.
The presentation "Overview of the activities of the geothermal sector in the Republic of Croatia and the results of the tender process" was presented by the Director of the Geothermal Sector, Martina Tuschl.
She said that the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency with the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development has launched a tender for six exploration areas for geothermal waters in the period from 28 December 2022 to 1 June 2023: Leščan, Međimurje 5, Kotoriba, Pčelić, Sječe and Ferdinandovac-1 , and that investors were thus offered exploration areas in four Croatian counties (Međimurska, Koprivničko-križevačka, Podravska, Osječko-baranjska) with a total area of over 200 km2.
The total works include the construction of 21 geothermal wells. The expected value of the investment is over €400 million, while the total potential of all the sites is around 600,000.00 MWh of electricity - Tuschl said, adding that the tender received 16 bids from 11 different bidders for five of the six research areas on offer.
The Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development has issued permits to the company INA-INDUSTRIJA NAFTE d.d. on the basis of a tender for the exploration of geothermal waters in the exploration areas "Leščan" and "Međimurje 5". "Pčelić" and "Sječe" - to the company IGeoPen d.o.o. (the bidder relies on a company from the UK); "Kotoriba" - to Viola Energy Generation d.o.o. (the bidder relies on a company from Turkey).
For the "Ferdinandovac" research area, not a single bid was received, so the Commission proposed to cancel the tender.
The cascade potential of geothermal energy offers the possibility of a strong step in development because in addition to potential electricity generation, geothermal energy can also be used for heating and in agriculture, e.g. for heating greenhouses - emphasized Martina Tuschl, who in her presentation referred to the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP), through which the Republic of Croatia has recognised and supported the geothermal potential, and the Agency through measure C1.2. R1-I2 "Promotion of energy efficiency, heating and renewable energy sources for decarbonization of the energy sector" as part of the NRRP, allocated funds amounting to almost 30 million euros for testing and confirming the geothermal potential.