Enhanced Geothermal Systems:Mitigating Risk in Urban Areas

by Toni Kraft, P. Martin Mai, Stefan Wiemer, Nicholas Deichmann, Johannes Ripperger, Philipp Kästli, Corinne Bachmann, Donat Fäh, Jochen Wössner, Domenico Giardini
Year: 2009

Extra Information

EOS. August 2009, Vol. 90, No. 32, Pages 273-280.


With the global challenge to satisfy an increasing demand for energy while at the same time stabilizing or reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations in the atmosphere, geothermal energy from enhanced geothermal systems (EGSs) increasingly is being recognized as an attractive alternative energy source throughout the world. However, the risks associated with the seismicity necessarily induced during the development of an EGS constitute a significant challenge for the widespread implementation of this technology. This article provides a preliminary overview of lessons learned from an attempt to develop an EGS beneath the city of Basel, Switzerland.