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Thread: Answer to heating/fuel problems? Discuss

  1. #1
    RogerLaura is offline Junior Member
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    Lightbulb Answer to heating/fuel problems? Discuss

    Just a quick observation... I've read a lot of posts on here and elsewhere about the lack of heating and insulation in houses, and how they are freezing cold in winter and cost a fortune to heat...

    Now this comes from a layman's point of view, but has the issue of geothermal power never been raised in NZ? With all the volcanic activity, hot springs etc. would it not be a viable option to heat the entire country? It has happened in Iceland, admittedly a smaller population, so less infrastructure required.... though not massively different in terms of topography and land mass.

    Just thinking out loud really, but has this ever come up in the political arena? Self-sufficient, sustainable, clean source of energy that it is....

    If you're a scientific type or engineer, please correct me if I'm way off the mark, or living in some dream world.

  2. #2
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    I'm pretty sure that geothermal power is already used in NZ as I remember reading about it in The Listener or somewhere ages ago. I'm not sure whether the geothermal hot spots are sufficiently widespread to be of use nationwide though.

    I think it used to be fairly common practice for landowners to sink a thermal bore in places like Rotorua, but the authorities put a stop on it a while back. They were worried that someone might strike the weakspot in the Earth's crust and set off the biggest volcanic eruption since Akaroa blew its top.

    Ok, I made that bit up, but it sounds about right....

  3. #3
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    Taffy is offline He who shall be ignored
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    As KP says, it's not widespread enough to be of use, but where it does exist some people make use of it. NZ also seems to have a policy of letting people enjoy the natural phenomena rather than building dirty great power plants on top of them! Rotorua has some kind of plant that makes use of the steam but I'm not totally sure what it does. On your way in to Rotorua you can see the enormous steam pipes passing in to a station of some sort but it looks too small to be a power station, or if it is it wouldnt power much more than the local area.
    Taffy

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    MotherBear's Avatar
    MotherBear is offline The missing link
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    A news article about a potential power crisis that indicates some thermal power is in use in South Island.
    Mother Bear

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    From here.
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