COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Denmark’s A.P. Moller Holding, which controls shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk, plans a move into the hot water heating market in support of the country’s switch to renewable energy.
Denmark generated close to half of its electricity consumption from wind energy last year. Maersk said it sees geothermal heating playing a central role in the green transition for the country’s heating supply.
“A.P. Moller Holding reviews the opportunity of providing geothermal solutions, with the potential to cover up to 30 percent of all district heating (in Denmark),” Chief Executive Robert Maersk Uggla said on Twitter.
A.P. Moller Holding, the Maersk family’s investment company, would be responsible for exploration, construction and operation of the plants, it said in a statement.
District heating networks generate heat in central plants and pump hot water into homes via underground networks.
“Our model is rather simple: We supply the warm water to the district heating companies who distributes to the consumers,” Samir Abboud, who is in charge of the geothermal project, said in a statement.
The holding firm declined to comment on how large the investment would be.
Abboud told Danish daily Berlingske that the investment would be in the double-digit billion Danish crowns.
It would take 5-6 years from exploration until the geothermal plant would be able to provide warm water to district heating companies, which supply around 64 percent of Danish households.
Today, less than 1 percent of Denmark’s district heating comes from geothermal energy.
District heating accounts for just 9 percent of space and hot water heating in the European Union.
Last year the European Commission published a strategy paper for heating and cooling - which account for around 40 percent of EU energy consumption - that aims to boost district heating and renewable energy use.
Reporting by Stine Jacobsen; editing by Jason Neely