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 Home / About Us / Communication / News / Minewaterproject expands to France and Germany 
Minewaterproject expands to France and Germany «  Back

Three new partners joined the Minewaterproject today. The city of Bönen (Germany), the French institute BRGM and Wirtschaftsförderungsgesellschaft (Wfg) Kreis Aachen (Germany) have signed the Joint Convention, along with other partners in the project.

The minewaterproject aims to use minewater as an alternative energy source to heat and cool buildings.The participation of the new partners, strengthens the project. The number of participants has increased to seven and four European countries are now involved. Each new participant contributes in its own significant way.

The city of Bönen, a centre of a former mining region between the Ruhrgebiet and the Münster/Sauerland, will invest in a pilot project. This project is similar to the project in Heerlen, which has already proved that minewater can be used to heat buildings.

Rainer Eßkuchen, Mayor of Bönen is excited about joining the Minewaterproject:
“Mining in Bönen has been the greatest employer from 1899 to 1981 and has had an great impact on peoples life in this area. It is wonderful to see that very hard work down below for over eight decades now opens the chance for Bönen in a laboratory – situation of a closed minebuilding to gain new resources through geothermical ways of technology. We are not only talking about a certain amount of calories but of sustainability and technological leadership for a whole industrial region.”

The participation of BRGM in the minewaterproject opens up a whole new network in France. BRGM states: "Since 1969 BRGM is the major player in the geothermal energy sector in France and continues to strengthen its role in this field. On the other hand, BRGM has been recently appointed by the French Government to act on its behalf on issues related to post-mining activities. The Minewater project offers an ideal framework for crossing these two major activities of our institution."

Wfg Kreis Aachen
The city of Aachen and the city of Heerlen are neighbours across their countries borders. Both cities already work closely together to promote economic growth. Wfg Kreis Aachen plays a role in the shaping of the economic landscape of the former mining region around Aachen. The institute states: “The economic development agency Wfg mbH together with the owner of the former hard coal mines EBV GmbH aim for a positive development of the post mining region of Aachen. The use of geothermal energy from mine water based on an European teamwork is an important opportunity to give a positive incentive for the attraction of future technologies within the ongoing process of structural change.”

Other participants
The Joint Convention was also signed by current members of the Minewaterproject, who were involved since the start of the project: the city of Heerlen (The Netherlands), the city of Midlothian (UK), Weller (The Netherlands) and BRE (UK).
Since its start, the project has made significant progress. Which has directly resulted in considerable international interest and the growth of the number of participants.

If the Minewaterproject succeeds in proving that minewater can be used to heat and cool (large) city districts, it will have a substantial impact on the necessary transition from fossil fuel to sustainable clean and non exhaustive energy.  Because of the substantial value of the Minewaterproject for all former mine areas in NW-Europe, the project has received European Regional Development Funding. Interreg IIIB is contributing 48%.

HEERLEN, 12 december 2006
Concernstaf Communicatie
Karen Glerum
(045) 560 40 70

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